Friday, May 6, 2011

The Sights & Sounds of the Woods

   Here are a couple of videos I shot during my hike. Granted, the camera is shaky, but I think they still give a good sense of the grandeur of these woods, with their massively tall Redwoods and Douglas Fir, and the unspoiled trails. I was there from about 10:30 am until 5 pm, and once I left the 2-mile paved trail where all the tourists hang out, I barely saw a dozen people all day long. (And 8 of those people were in two groups of four!) I really got the experience of having the solitude of the woods to myself, and was able to tune into the views, the scent of the clean air and the trees, the sounds of the creek, and the occasional twittering hummingbirds.
   There was a period of 20 minutes or so when a group of 4 kiwi tourists came up behind me. The two men passed me while I stopped to have a drink of water, and the women were lagging behind, chattering the whole way. The men were absolutely obnoxious, talking loudly and completely unaware that their racket was unwelcome. I caught back up with them immediately and the trail was too narrow for me to pass. They were completely in their own world—and not appreciating the amazing world they were amidst. They were taller than me (surprise, surprise), and frankly, I was NOT enjoying the view of their backsides. I finally had to say, "Hey guys, could I please get by?" and they begrudgingly let me pass, as if I were inconveniencing them in some way. It's not as if I'd block THEIR view. Jerks.
   It's a shame that some who have the opportunity to visit such extraordinary places don't seem to appreciate it. One of the joys of hiking alone is becoming totally immersed in a new world without distraction. Once these guys were safely behind me, I took a fork in the trail and managed to lose them, much to my relief.