Monday’s are usually a shit show for me, and this Monday would try its hardest to bring fecal matter to the dick-tip of this week’s production, but I counter attacked with some fecalness of my own. WIN!
Right out of the gate I had an 8 AM appointment with my eye doctor. Afterward, I would have plenty of time to ride, fuck about, or actually get some work done, but I declined. Instead, I packed my camera and boots and after my appointment, I drove straight to the Neithercut Woodlands about 25 minutes north of town to get a few miles of hiking in.
I’ve passed by Neithercut before but never thought of stopping there until today. As I hurled myself down the road I drove right by the entrance and had to turn around. Then, just as I was about to enter the small parking area near the closed gate another car swooped in. Shit! What are the chances that some other unemployed sap planned to go for a hike on an early Monday morning at the same time??
Since I didn’t want to endure any awkward parking lot small talk or the even more awkward accidental trail stalking1, I paid heed to the caffeine inspired rumbling in my lower intestines and drove a few minutes more down the road to a local minimart where I proceeded to unleash an unholy fury of bespattered brown upon their men’s room.
With that behind me (no pun intended) I headed back to the parking lot, got my boots on and prepared my camera. While doing so I noticed that the other person was still in their car. So, I just ignored they were sitting in their car, readied myself and scurried off into the woods trying to avoid seeing my parking lot companion was slow, or someone choosing the Woodlands’ entranceway as their preferred location for an early morning jack or pre-work heroine use.2
Finally, I was on some trails. At first, I was a little disappointed, the first trail started off paved (boo!) then finally turned to grass and dirt (yeah!) but wasn’t all that long (boo!). If I would have bothered to actually look at the trail map, I would have seen that longer trail(s) started elsewhere. Once I found myself deeper into the woods with a couple of miles of swamps and forest ahead of me, all was right in the world and I happily stomped along.
I hiked for a couple of hours, took some pics, then headed home where multiple duties awaited me to get done.
It was worth the trip up to the Woodlands, but the lack of critter sightings was a disappointment, as was never really being able to get deep enough into the woods to avoid hearing vehicles speeding down M-115. Hope to check the trails out again later in the summer, maybe with an earlier start.
I had planned to do a dirt road ride today but it rained pretty much all night and not sure I want to contend with all that gritty mud. I may find myself in the woods somewhere again, trying to avoid people, and taking photos of woodsy stuff.
- Trail Stalking is when you find yourself awkwardly close to another hiker or rider and don’t know whether to kick up the pace and pass or hang back and let them get ahead so that you aren’t creeping each other out.
- It turns out I think it was just some wispy biology type women from CMU. I would later see them near the main building carrying some of the strange sticks and log concoctions that I saw along the first trail. I think they are used to test the dexterity and mental awareness of chipmunks in the wild. Of course that doesn’t mean that my initial theories were wrong, just unlikely.