Monday, March 28, 2011

Forget me nots, mud , detours, oceans and mountains

After reading about Kathi's death, and looking outside at the blue skies, I made a promise to myself to go somewhere timeless, to remember what it is to be alive. And to remember we all are just passing through and it is our responsibility not to waste our time here.

Of course since this is a Monday, it is hard to imagine taking the time to do this. Mondays after all are those busy days that tempt us to forget that life is for living, not working.

Today - today it was right to take the time to embrace life. And so I left, letting my coworkers know I should be back by 3 pm, but would be out of cell range.

With such sparkling blue skies I knew the coast would be clear literally and figuratively, so I decided to head to Point Reyes. I threw a couple of packs of sharkies in the bag, a peanut and jelly sandwich, a bottle of water and my camera and off I went.

At Bear Valley I parked by the Morgan Horse ranch. No horses out , but a heron was hiding behind a watering hole. It was around 10:00 when I finally hit Bear Valley Trail. This trail heads to Arch Rock and I thought this would be the perfect 7 mile walk. It should take a little over 2 hours allowing time for lunch on the rock and photos on the way. It has been quite awhile since the trail, the trees and flowers have had a sunny day. I nearly stopped flat in my tracks when I saw the forget-me-nots lining the trail. It wasn't a coincidence I found myself here. It was meant to be. The flowers reminded me all along the way of Kathi and why I need to keep walking until there is a Cure. It felt good to be out there.
There is so much magic along the way. The little surprises are at every turn.

The butterfly/moth enjoying the sunshine as it flew from forget-me-not to forget-me-not.

The sounds of water was everywhere. Percolating from hillsides, running down rocks, taking over the trail at spots. Each sound varied in depth and intensity.

Forget-me-nots lining the creek.

Trees fallen and creating obstacles for the water.

Churning and rushing its way towards the ocean.

Fallen trees from past storms, covered with moss.

Fungi on the decaying bark.

Flowers reaching for the sun.

From dark and damp shade to open meadows bathed in sunlight.

This was at the top of a gentle hill. Somehow I found myself winded anyway so I sat for a while and enjoyed the view.

Douglas Iris

Heading downhill

The sun filtered through the trees above.

Water beading up on grass.

The side of the trail turned into a bog.

Ferns and other greenery growing on the side of a tree.

A fern covered hill.

Flowers springing from a sheer rock ledge.

Horses heading back.

A fallen tree cut into logs.

The trail was covered with fallen branches. Here I saw a directional sign. The sign I looked at briefly that was pointing left looked like the right direction to go. I thought it was anyway.... I was wrong, but I would find out for awhile.

Crossing a bridge I started heading uphill. WAY uphill. I didn't remember this part from when Glenn and I had walked to Arch Rock before. Oh no... I did not. So I tried to stop every once in awhile and take a picture of what was right there.

Tiny pine cones

A tree,, moss covered and carved by some unknown force.

And of course Forget-me-nots.

Banana Slugs

Feathery moss

The trail ahead.


You can get a sense from this picture how high I climbed. My thighs ached and burned.

Right about here I finally ran into a passing group of hikers. I asked them if I could get to Arch Rock on this trail. Yes said one. NO said the other two. But the fellow who assured me I could get there, pulled out a map and pointed the way. Stay right he said. You'll get there.
So I tried to have faith and enjoy the views.

At last a sign marker. Head to the coast I told myself.

Climb that muddy hill.

Head for the clearing.

If all else fails wait for the strawberries to grow.

Keep on the trail when its dry and head to the side of the trail when it is so rutted you are afraid of twisting an ankle.

And of course when the trail is now a stream the side is the preferred route.

The stream opps trail, ran by a little lake.

Aha a good sign. Arch Rock and the Coast Trail.

This coast is the same one you can get to from our house.

I was hoping I wouldnt have to walk THAT far!

And there they are the white cliffs of Point Reyes.

These are so fairy like to me.

Opps where did the trail go? Fallen Tree....

I went around and got back on the trail.

Ferns springing up.

Wild flowers popping up.

And a sure sign of spring...poppies.

Rock formations.

A view...

Is there anywhere more beautiful?

Hills above the ocean

From whence I came....looking back on the Coast trail.


Poppies on the hill.

The coast below

Looking up the coast
More poppies

Love these flowers

Down the coast

The trail

Arch Rock!

Almost back to Bear Valley Trail

Water bubbling up from a spring.

Opppsss.... Mud? There was no side to the trail where I made the decision to gingerly step in what looked like shallow mud. BUT it went up over my ankle and about 4 inches up my pants.

With muddy shoes, I headed back towards the car. TIRED. SORE. Full of life.

By waterfalls.

And to the sign where I made a wrong turn only to find some of the most beautiful scenery on earth.

This was a walk that I started and wanted to end to honor Kathi. Along the way I have picked (don't tell anyone) two sprigs of Forget-me-nots and one of a sunny wildflower. I stood on the bridge where today I made my unplanned detour. I threw them down into the water below. The water will carry them to the ocean.

I said my thanks for the life of Kathi Phirman and wished her a good voyage as the flowers faded from view. I will not forget her.