The worst of it was the rain-everything was slick and slippery-and the constant creek crossings. I got hung up on low branches more than once. One time, my hair clip clamped on a branch I was going under and I was stuck. Another time, a bare branch got hung on one of my pockets and Matt had to come get me free.
Not much backpacking is like Bankhead, few trails have sliding, climbing, balancing and jumping as part of getting from Point A to Point B, but I have always loved that kind of hike as long as I can get dry and clean after!
Matt came up with an idea for a YouTube show about all the stuff no one tells you about with regards to hiking and backpacking. We entertained ourselves the whole hike with ideas for the women's segment.
We did just over 4 miles in about 4 hours, but I don't care too much about the numbers, we had a great time and I got in some good practice.
One of my favorite quotes of the day was when Matt was sailing, on his butt, down a cliff face with the random notion of stopping himself via smacking a log. I had dubbed the action 'glissading' after the tradition of sliding down snowbanks on your butt while backpacking. He yelled, "Is it still glissading if there are saw briers?" I went a different way. ha!
And, finally, a sad note. Jessie is in serious decline. She's had what the vet suspects is a stroke. She was so far gone afterward that I thought we'd be burying her on Christmas Eve, but she rallied. Then another that night, and another rally, but she's not back to herself and spends most of the day on her side, staring. She's not in pain that we can tell and will lift her head and interact, even get up and walk around, then collapse again. Just going out to pee leaves her exhausted.
I don't know how much longer she has, but it's likely days.
I've sobbed myself out, even Jess is like, "Oh, this again" when I get going. But damn. She's been a good dog and she' been our dog, for 12 years now. It's going to leave hole for sure.