Wednesday, October 31, 2012. Nottawasaga Bluffs to Pretty River.
Well, today’s post is “brought to you by the Letter D…”: Dreary, Dismal, Damp, Dark, Drizzly, Drip… Drip… Drip… You get the idea. Maybe it was because it was the fourth day of rain in a full week of rain. Maybe it was because it was our fourth day in a row to be hiking. Maybe it was because we were just tired – tired of being wet, tired of fighting the puddles and the mud, tired of the work it takes to keep our gear dry beneath our ponchos. Perhaps, dare I say it, a bit of the adventure of rain hiking has started to wear off.
I could add some more D-words for Marian today. Driven. Determined. Channelling her inner warrior goddess in ways I hadn`t encountered so far in this journey. I was happy enough to move at her pace. It was that kind of day, a day when you just want to “git ‘er done”, hurry back to the Collingwood condo for a long hot bath.
At least it wasn’t Dangerous. We had finally hit a day with easier hiking where we travelled mostly on top of the escarpment – inside the cloud, as it happened, shrouded in mist. And it wasn’t all doom and gloom – I couldn’t help but be delighted by the little fairy lights created by the water drops on all the small branches, and by the soft greys of the trees through the fog. In the spirit of Hallowe’en, our ponchos looking like brilliant orange pumpkins, we tramped through a “birch tree cemetery” in the early afternoon – a forest floor littered with white bark logs skewed in every direction.
About 3 hours in we descended from the ridge, following the muddy tracks of a snowmobile trail for part of the way. In one long section of the downward trek the water had completely taken ownership of our trail. A virtual tributary of the Pretty River it was, with a teenager’s sense of entitlement, leaving us dancing perilously along its edges to keep our feet dry.
At long last we reached the Pretty River itself, swollen now with the rain of the last 4 days. It rushed along to our left as we walked on the cushioned path in the shelter of stately cedars, arriving soon at our car and so ending another day in Blue Mountain. magdalena