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Monday, October 21, 2013

What is Trail Magic?

Trail Magic is something you want to experience if you are out there hiking. It's the collective care provided to you by other people who support your effort. It can come in many forms. Sometimes people will transport your heavy pack for a day, so you can "slack pack," and give your body a break from the weight. Sometimes it is a shower and a bed to sleep in, with rides from and back to the trail. Sometimes it is a treat delivered to a waypoint.

I've been the recipient of a lot of trail magic. Today I got to provide some on behalf of our chapter.

This year, there have been two people out doing thru-hikes of the North Country National Scenic Trail. One, Luke Jordan, "Strider," just finished this past week!

The other is a man doing a "flip-flop." He started in Ohio and hiked to New York, then went to North Dakota and is hiking back to his starting point in Ohio. He's more my generation. Either the young or the young-at-heart seem to have the time to take on this trail. His name is Al Learned, and he's been keeping a lower profile than Strider, but he's supposedly been seen entering our chapter's area.

So today, on behalf of Spirit of the Woods, I got to take a stash of treats out to a trail crossing to leave for him. How does that work?

Can you see it?

trail magic

Let me help. This is closer.

trail magic

The first view was taken while standing on the trail. How will Al find it? Here's what he should see when he's coming down the trail.

trail magic

Hopefully, he won't miss this! Inside is a note telling him where to look to see the cache, and being sure he knows the water is for him if he needs it.

trail magic

It's fun to be able to do this for someone else!

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M. J. Joachim said...

This is really cool. It's nice to know hiking buddies stick together like this.

Ann said...

trail magic, what a awesome idea. Don't you kind of wish you could be there to see him find it?

jean pell said...

Joan, I adore this practice. My question is how do you keep Bears from raiding the cache?
Sharing this one. :)

Sharkbytes said...

MJ- everyone appreciates a little bit of care

Ann- I really do!

Jean- Love your new pic! It is hung in a tree. Has to be 3 feet below horizontal branch, 3-4 feet from any side branch, and 12 feet above the ground. I have practice!

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