We are in the Huachuca Mountains. We have spent a couple of days here and accomplished our climb to Miller Peak. We have a casual day planned, heading back down the mountain.
Here is the rest of the story, which is in three other parts:
DF has heard an owl in the night. She tells me that she is grateful that it came. She says that it felt big. It had a big sound, “I’m here. Anybody else here? Who, who?”
After my climb out of the tent, I stand stiffly and take in the wilderness. These trees all tell a story; it is their history they speak of. It is like a mother’s stretchmarks or an old soldier’s wounds. These are tangled, bent, burled and shaped by their lives. The rings have a tale, too. There is an old hulk with a twisted trunk near the watercourse. The twist says that it had had a ley energy shape it. When the fires came, they burnt it to be like a barber pole.
DF is nude, standing in the middle of the trail, looking lively. She offers Rainbow Chi Gung, as warm sun beams find their way through to her.
We take our places and both stand naked, moving to her prescription for health and chakra alignment. My blood begins to move, stiffness dissipates, the body becomes more fluid. DF is lovely to watch, as I take her lead.
I lay down and take a few pictures and as I organize the tent. DF announces that the water is heated the oats are soaking in the cups.
Dehydrated bananas, and strawberries are added to the moister with a tube of deep red honey. I sprinkle a touch of cinnamon over it and mix it in.
We have eaten all of the food, but some snacks. The tamari/carrot/nut crackers that I made tend to re-hydrate when eaten and fill a belly. We plan to be relying on these today, to supplement what food that we have left to get home.
The sun is warm this morning, the skies are clear. The shade is chilly.
After breakfast, DF has laid out a mat to stretch in the sun.
It feels so good to be out of those icky clothes and air bathe. I also move about, working my tight calves and thighs.
We break camp casually. There is no extreme hurry today. After the first mile or so, it is downhill all of the way. We know how much water that we will need, now. At the bathtub spring, I’m able to lighten my load by a pound or two. DF, whose pack carries the food, has lost two more pounds of load still.
We have a good snack with a few vitamins and supplements, as we fill our bottles. It is pleasant here. The wind is calmed, as are our spirits, helped by full bellies from brunch.
Moving on the trail, the once still wind, again keeps our torsos in coverings. It has cold sheets of air rising up the canyon as we climb out of it.
We are going uphill. I remembered the trail being more level than it is. We come to the ridge where the trail defuses, disappearing. An older couple comes up the other way. I drop my shirt out of my waist band as DF does the same. They have been day hiking, preparing for an even more challenging hike. I notice their long legs. They tell of where they have been today, and I wonder how they could cover so much ground.
As he glances down at my mini skirt t-shirt, he says, “Border Patrol officers are up ahead.”
I’d like to know if they are the same two officers who awoke us last night. I’d like to know what the condition of Miller Canyon Trail is now like, down lower. There are old mining ruins and creek water down there, but I don’t know if I would want to scrape my way through the overgrowth to get there. Perhaps I’ll spend a few days with clippers doing seva there next year, when these mountains warm up again. I could love a pleasant place to stay.
We continue across the side of the mountain, observing the change of seasonal flowers and watching every step with care. What was flowers are mostly seed. We attempt to remember what flower each of these types of seed pods were, two weeks ago.
I wonder where the Border Patrol guys are.
Have they stopped to sit? I can see a good distance at this part of the mountainside. After a half of an hour, we see two green uniformed fellows jogging down the trail, like two Tarahumara native runners. Once again, we drop skirts.
As they quickly pass, I ask about Miller canyon. They are not the intruders in the night. The one following stops long enough to excuse himself. He excitedly tells me that they are in a hurry, “We have a couple of ‘guys’ ahead!” They are off running to rain on some illegal person’s day. Again, I have to wonder about the effectiveness of that tall steel wall down in the valley.
Eventually, we find ourselves at our agreed resting place, that big rock with its vistas. We fill up with our snacks. It is definitely a downhill walk from here.
The place is feeling familiar. We spent eight hours on this mountain just two weeks ago, then two days ago and we were back again. It is late afternoon on a Monday. We don’t expect to see anyone else. The wind is less on this side of the mountains. It is time to finally strip and just enjoy some naked hiking, until the shadows engulf our sunlight.
We make our way down the hill. Before, there were a few yellowed leaves on the aspens. Today we pass much more and other types of trees on the hillsides are showing color.
Fall has arrived.
We will soon have to start our nude hiking at lower elevations, with the new season.
We stop at the stand of tall original pines to rest and DF decides to put a dress on. We’re only maybe a half of a mile away from the campground where we left the truck. After walking non-stop, the quick rest feels wonderful. Our feet are tired from the miles of rocks and further along there will be some of the worse of it.
Just before we return to civilization, I decide to take a picture of the crappy rock surface. Each step is painful on my feet. I shockingly realize that I have left my camera at the pine tree stand!
I leave my backpack with DF. I don’t want to walk these rocks an extra mile, but I walk off at a quick almost running clip. After a short while, I notice how easily that I am gliding through this. With the pack off, these rocks are not anywhere near the problem that I had been enduring. Although dog tired before, I’m encouraged at how I get to my camera and back. It is notable. Naked hiking without a load makes a terrific difference.
Nobody is at the campground. We strip completely and wander about with no concerns.
On the winding road, we only see three boys with an SUV, parked on a cliff side. They just appear to be waiting and watching. I wonder if they are the coyotes waiting for those “guys.”