Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

04 May 2012

Summer is ready when you are

Keep rolling.

 I been telling (threatening) the middle child that we would do a s24o camping trip on a school night since last fall. Now is the time and the time is now.

The secret ridge top camp spot is rideable from home (totally), but in the interest of keeping it as fun as possible for the shorter legs among us, we got dropped off  in the middle of nowhere.

 From the middle of nowhere, it is a short ride to the Good Stuff...

 You remember how all that poison oak is all encroaching and stuff? It's a bad situation in which to fall:

 D learned on the ill-fated Coe trip that sometimes, when riding loaded, you high-side it into the oak, and that when you are lying full length in the stuff you should keep bare skin as clear as possible and wait for help. And suffer the indignity of having it be filmed.

He was carrying his down bag (on account of how packable and light down is...) in his pack, along with warm clothes and school books required for the next day. His sleeping pad was strapped to the bars. It is a workable set up.

I was carrying my down bag (for the exact same reasons) strapped to my saddle and food, cookware, and toiletries in the frame bag. My sleeping pad was strapped to the bars. I also had a small pack loaded with the test-hammock and it's straps,beer and a warm jacket.

D opted to sleep in the hammock.

A nice meadow.

 The evening slid into night and the owls came out. We stood around and hooted at them. I drank some beers. D ate some chocolate (but declined to make s'mores. It was a Good Time. He is much more talkative when away from the distractions of TV or youtube skate videos or his 1/4 pipe, or just about anything more inneresting than talking to his old man. (Though I suppose the same type of distractions distract me, too.) Anyhow, when we're standing around in the dark with nothing to do but hoot at owls, it is not only a Good Time it is some Father-Son type scenario. I lik that.

Sadly, all things end. We went to sleep, I on the ground and D in the hammock. The old heads among the audience have been wondering which item I neglected to pack on this camping trip. Well, wonder no more- I left the tent at home on purpose because it was a 20% at best chance of rain, so I only forgot the tarp. No big deal, I've slept in worse than fresh meadow grass in a comfy down bag on a cushion of air.

I first had to cover my face because the fog rolled in and sat upon us so heavily it was dropping water at a rate just under actual drizzle yet precipitating enough you could feel it tapping at your skin. Since this shoulder thing has been happening, I can only sleep on my Left side (the back was out cuz the face shielding down bag would smother me). The precipitation gently increased throughout the night, turning my comfy down bag into a sodden, heavy disappointment. I hoped D was faring better in the trees, because I was waking every 1/2 hour. The text I sent my sweetie at 5:19 read "I'm effed. I am wet and waiting for light."

When it brightened enough to move around without a headlamp, I made coffee and oatmeal. I'd been warm enough in the sad sack, but once out my jeans (soaking wet on the Left side from where the drizzle had pooled on the sleeping pad) underscored the wisdom of wool and the folly of cotton.

D had fared a little better, but he had not slept well because of the drizzle and the down. When I looked in on him, he'd wiggled the pad out from under himself and it was useless next to him in the wet hammock. He wasted no time in getting up when he heard me rattling around.

I bet I remember the tarp next time. For what that's worth, it's time I learned the lesson that camping around the ocean is always a dewy mess and we should just bring the dang tent. Synthetic bags would have been a lot less water-logged, and warmer in the meantime.

D felt better with some hot food in his belly. We packed up quick- the dripping wet sleeping bags I just shoved into my expandable small pack- and got on the trail. It was all downhill from there. OK, 2 climbs, but mostly downhill. I blew D's mind with the sneaky patchwork of singletrack and path I wended us through in order to be late to school. (That part didn't bother him.)

All in all, it was a bust.

Still beat sitting around the same old same old. Don't kid yourself.

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