Sometimes a backpack trip is not about going as far as you can or reaching a summit or any other landmark. Sometimes a backpack trip is simply an opportunity to relax outside all day and all night. Forget about the fast-paced, high tech world we live in and enjoy some simplicities of life.
Our most recent backpack trip epitomizes one of the key reasons that I like to backpack. It is an escape from our complex, yet somehow “easier” life in today’s society. Being removed from most of the gadgets and conveniences of life that “progress” has brought us allows me to simply enjoy being alive. I can appreciate our beautiful and amazing planet that we live on. I can actually relax, not thinking about all of the tasks that need to be done at home or work. It is a wonderful opportunity for me to reflect and spend quality time with Aaron. Sometimes the simplest things in life can be the most rewarding and most enjoyable.
Well, I’ll give a brief description of Aaron and my recent backpack trip to Cochise Stronghold. Our original plan consisted of hiking up to the stronghold on Sunday and spending the night near the stronghold. On Monday we would explore the area of boulders around the stronghold, then hike down a canyon to the parking lot, making an 6–8 mile loop. Things didn’t go as planned. For starters we didn’t get to the parking lot until 2:30pm. We shouldered our packs at about 3:30 and head up the stronghold. A mile and a half to two miles up the trail we found an interesting section of boulders. We left the trail to check it out. It turned out to be a really nice camping area as well. It was already 4:30 so we decided just to stay there for the night and then do the rest of the loop the next day. We could save exploring for another trip.
The next morning it was cold — 20’s. I found it difficult to motivate myself to get moving so we didn’t. Instead, we dragged our sleeping bags outside and read our book (we were in the middle of reading “Angles and Demons” by Dan Brown to each other) until the sunlight reached us. The silly book was rather engaging so we didn’t actually start packing up to leave until 12:30pm. Needless to say we didn’t do the whole loop, we simply hiked back the way we came. Definitely not one of those record breaking hikes for miles or altitude gain/loss!
On the other hand, the two days were absolutely gorgeous. The moon that night was bright, the sky clear and the air was crisp and clean. Spending the day lying out in the sun in our own private, outdoor “home” was simply heavenly. I couldn’t have wished for anything else.
The next time we visit though — I’ll make it to the stronghold…