I don’t want to leave. The lake was mirror calm in the morning and the sun was warm. I couldn’t imagine a better place to be right then!
But then again, hiking in this weather through the spectacular Lunndörren was also something I looked forward to.
The blister I got yesterday made some noise when I set off. I tried my best to ignore it and walk normally, but the instinct to somehow protect it was strong so I knew that I would soon have a new problem somewhere else, caused by the unnatural gait. So after fording the creek, I applied a Compeed (never go on a long hike without!) and the problem was solved, I didn’t feel a thing after that.
Something very unexpected happened during the first half of the hike. I met two people! On Friday I didn’t see anyone the whole day, and yesterday I saw one person far in the distance. So two other hikers was like a rush hour now. 😀
With the weather being favourable, the valley was a whole new experience and I needed to do a lot more photo stops than on Friday. I would have wanted to have more coffee breaks as well, but in this prairie landscape, there aren’t any natural coffee break spots so I didn’t stop until at the shelter again. And sitting there… wow. What a feeling. Normally when I’m so totally alone in the middle of nowhere, I’m a little bit uneasy. If not consciously, then at least there’s this nagging feeling at the back of my mind. But not today. I realised that I was as carefree as I have ever been in my life, both yesterday and today. And with being carefree, I was well and truly free. I wish I could describe how enormous that insight was for me!
With so many kilometres already behind me, my feet were really not happy. My problem is with my heels, the cushion under the heel. It just felt totally worn out. Otherwise I had no issues with my energy, I was still walking at a good pace. Then I got down to the forest, and it was mosquito hell. My options were to stop and apply repellent, which would only protect my hands and face, but not my arms and shoulders and head. And stopping would only allow more of the bugs to find me. The second option was to walk faster. So I pretty much sprinted all the way to the car, and when I finally got there, I just threw my pack in the car and drove off.
I was in desperate need to fill my water bottle, but with adrenaline still in my veins, I was driving so fast that I missed the first opportunity and then when I got to the second opportunity, it was raining so hard that I wouldn’t have made it down to the creek without getting soaking wet in the process. How’s that for irony? But when the raining stopped and I finally got some water in the bottle, I calmed down. It is such a shame that all hikes almost always end up like that, being chased by the small bloodsuckers. But the bug bites will soon stop itching, and what remains are some great memories from one of the best hikes I’ve ever done!