Wanderlusting: An Evening Winter Hike
“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.” ~ Hal Borland
In a previous post, I had mentioned (Okay I was vague-blogging) a family health issue which was part of the reason I had flown home. I also have to thank you guys so much for the outpouring of love, prayers, and just all around support I received from all of you. It meant the world to me and I am sure helped with all the good juju flying around!
My Dad has been fighting a bone infection since August and they had come to the decision that they needed to remove some of the bone since it was not healing and they were worried about it spreading. At the same time they had decided to do surgery, he was diagnosed with some heart issues which complicated surgery farther.
His surgery was first thing Friday morning. Thankfully it went relatively well and he was home by noon, kinda sort of recovering.
NONE of us are great patients, and my Dad especially is not. Despite being almost seventy-five, he is something of a workaholic, and since he owns his own business, shutting off from it, is near impossible for him. Despite the doctors telling him he had to stay off his feet, he was hobbling around like it was nothing. My Mom is a freakin’ saint because as a former nurse she has been taking care of him, and he has not been the best patient. It doesn’t help that recovery has been slow, and there have been added complications with that.
Hike the Whites
With my Dad through surgery and home (kind of) recovering, my brother and I decided to go for a quick hike in the afternoon.
The afternoon plans turned into evening ones because when I got to my brother’s house my nephew wanted me to watch Inspector Gadget and how could I refuse?
Two hours after our initial start time, my brother and I finally headed into the mountains to hike Arethusa Falls. Arethusa is one of my favorite hikes which I have only documented, about here, and here, and oh here too. And despite how those posts read, Arethusa is a great hike during the Summer too. I actually use to hike it only in the Summer, but anywho.
It is a fairly easy and quick three mile hike, but I had gone for a run that morning (Have I mentioned I am Type A overachiever?) and I was exhausted. (I didn’t realize it then, but my body was already fighting the creeping crud) My brother had also gone for a run and had ben skiing all week, so we were a tired bedraggled pair.
Despite the fact we were dragging some derriere, we flipping killed the hike. And we didn’t even realize it!
We must have stopped every five minutes on the guise of picture taking, but really it was to catch our breaths and rest. Despite all the stops, a detour because a bridge had been washed out and spending ample time at the waterfall, it only took us an hour and forty (I have done it in an hour and twenty during the summer but I was hauling) roundtrip. I felt like queen of the waterfall world.
There is a reason Arethusa is not just my favorite hike, but one of the most well hiked trails in the White mountains. No matter the season, it is stunning.
It was a frozen tundra with high snowdrifts covering the rocks and river. It was so deep, that we didn’t have to worry about falling in. Despite the snowy conditions, you could see water running underneath the ice as it begins it spring thaw.
It was gorgeous and we spent a fair amount of time at the base, taking pictures and exploring. Dusk was falling and though we had head lamps, we decided to head back.
While the trail is rocky during the Summer making fit placement precarious, during the Winter when it is snow-covered Arethusa is easy and fun to run down. It took us about twenty minutes to get back to the car our feet pounding the packed snow the whole way. We made it just before the sun set.
While the first half felt like torture, it was wonderful to be out and about in nature. As cliche as it sounds we all need that. To dial down and just experience rather then go go go. Arethusa reminds me why I am so grateful to have grown up where I did. While I am a city girl at heart, the constant beauty of the outdoors has such a soothing effect on me. We all need that calmness and serenity from time to time.
Have you done any night hiking? Have you visited any Waterfalls?