Hubs and I have made a pact to be more “outdoors-y” this summer. Given that last summer, we were both working ridiculous hours and me often on weekends. Needless to say we didn’t really get to enjoy summer.
That being said even now with my slightly awkward schedule, we’re working hard to really enjoy our weekends (and mornings) together while we can.
Being up in the Berkshires last weekend really reminded us both how we once used to be outdoorsy folk when we were younger. So we made a list of outdoorsy things we want to do. Golf. Play tennis. Run races together. Hike. Camp.
We were initially going to run a 5k in Annapolis on Saturday but my schedule, at least for now, has me working 8a-5p on Saturdays with Sundays and Mondays as my weekend. So instead, we did some research and decided to hike up Old Rag Mountain in the Shenandoah’s yesterday.
We’d both done some serious hiking when we were younger, hubs having done some in New Mexico as a boy scout and my last serious hike being Mount Mansfield in Vermont when I was 16 (it’s been a while. I know.) But I don’t think any of that could have prepared us for this.
The summit. There were bees EVERYWHERE when we went to eat. Seriously, I’m not allergic or anything but I am massively afraid of anything that bites, stings or in general can be tiny and afflict that kind of stinging pain. So we ate quickly and high tailed it out of there.
The rock scramble was a helluva lot more difficult than we had expected. Seriously. In addition to my fear of bees, I’m also afraid of heights. My theory on life is that I do things to help conquer these fears – i.e. I try to give blood regularly to get over my fear of needles. I enjoy hiking and rock climbing (though my upper body strength needs serious work) to get over my fear of heights. Bees? Well they’re just there.
It took us about 5 hours to do the whole thing which is a 3 mile hike to the top and about 4.5 miles back to the parking lot down the Saddle trail/Weakley Hollow fire road. Which is not too shabby. It took about an hour and a half to get to the bottom and just under 3 hours to get to the top which given about an hour and a half of that was the rock scramble is not too shabby.
I’ve got the bug now. I’m eager to find other good day hikes in the greater mid-atlantic area. Next summer we’re going to attempt Mount Washington in New Hampshire and possibly also Katahdin in Maine. I told hubs when we next go up to Vermont we’ll be doing Mansfield consider we played around on the back side that abuts Smugglers Notch (if you’re in Vermont and driving up route 108 between Smuggs and Mansfield you know where I’m talking about).
This whole being outdoorsy thing goes in stride with our over all goals to live healthier, more active lives and I’m not gonna lie, it was nice when hubs told me he “didn’t like being on the sidelines” of all my races. It’s way more fun to do all this with him. To be sweaty and stinky together. I’m already looking into what other hikes we can go on in the area – that are around a 3 hour drive (Old Rag was about 2 1/2 hours for us from Annapolis).
Today, both of our legs are a bit sore. My sneaks gave me a nasty blister yesterday so we’re going to rest for most of the day with the exception of some tennis tonight after my WW meeting.
Have you ever been hiking? What do you do to conquer your fears?