August 1982, there was a knock on my door. I answered and there stood a healthy, fit young woman with long blonde hair. She was very direct, "Hi, I'm the new school teacher in town. I want to go hiking and everybody says to talk to you. Will you take me hiking?" I told her of the long hike I was planning for Saturday into an area I wanted to explore. I invited her along. During the hike she asked to lead. She walked right off the end of the faint trail, missing a switch back. She asked where the trail went. I explained what she had done. "Can't we just climb this gully to get to the top?" she asked. As we climbed she spotted something small and bright white in the forest duff. She picked it up. She was curious as she pulled the matter apart on her lap. "What is this?" she asked.
"Because of the size," I answered, "I think those are the tiny hooves of a fawn and they did not digest when they went through the bear. All the other stuff is bear scat."
"Wow!" she said, "This is so neat!"
We became best friends and hiking companions long before we became lovers and husband and wife. We continue to hone our outdoor skills. We participated in winter mountain search & rescue on skis for 20 years. Very quickly we learned teaching others to be safe in the back country was a much more important and rewarding endeavor then picking up the pieces after. We currently teach for various government agencies and nonprofit organizations. But, most of all, we still get out there.
This is a journal of our explorations of the rural west with our pop-up camper and 4x4 pickup truck.
Stories. Stories are probably all that we will leave behind. These are some of ours. You may go to Our Stories page on the tab above to see a list of our stories in order. Or you can click on a story to the right (in the Blog Archive) to join us on one of our adventures. In the story you may click on a photo and a larger version will appear along with a filmstrip that you can move through. Enjoy.