Paris Mountain State Park is a mere 10 minutes from my comfy bed, and I try to get there at least once a week to do some hiking, meditating, exercise, communing with nature, ect. It’s safe to say that I have traversed every trail in the park at least once. Sometimes, if I’m want a more mental experience than physical one, I’ll stick to the easy trails so that I can let my mind wander. Other times, I want a hard-core hours-long hike, and I’ll combine a few of the trails for a 8-12 mile all day, sweat-inducing stroll up and down the twisty trails of Paris Mountain. But rarely do I hike with friends.
Some of this is because most of my hiking is done on weekdays while people who work ‘normal’ schedules are well, working. Some of this is because I truly like my alone in the woods time, and some of it, is because most of my friends aren’t what you’d call hikers. Now, I’m no expert, but I do it quite frequently, and have gotten pretty good at keeping up a reasonable pace while imitating a pack mule and scampering around like a squirrel.
So it was with a little bit of caution that I agreed to go hiking with my friend/nursing school classmate–important since she too has the weird, unpredictable schedule of a nurse. We met up on a Wednesday –because nurse schedules– and along with her 4 kids [roughly 9-15] hiked the Sulpher Springs trail. It’s one of the two rated at 9 [very strenuous–my guess is the rocks and roots]. The kids ran along like they were walking on flat land and we lagged behind, mostly due to chatting and catching up.