Forums Trip Reports RING OF FIRE

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    Great titled eh! Better title then just saying we hiked Holyburn today don’t you think? The truth is while I was hiking to Holyburn the Ring Of Fire came to mind so I thought I would share both my hike and other burning issues!

    See, the ‘ring of fire’ reminds me about a plate of Nachos I ate two days ago. The nacho chips were great. The sour cream was great. The cheese was great. The jalapeño peppers that covered the plate were great. The aftershock of digesting this force majeure resulted in the ‘ring of fire’ was not so great. Do you know what I mean? I mean, the first time I was struck with this problem I was in Nevada at a corporate event. After golfing all day in blazing sun; man did I make some money making putts that day all under the influence of too much beer; we returned to a Casino to encounter the ring of fire. Well, what I am talking about was somewhere we were introduced to all you could eat buffet of hot dogs. The Chief laced the ‘dogs’ with jalapeno peppers to spice things up. Of course, after too many beers the dogs tasted great. After several helpings and adding more peppers the end result was…..well, a very bad case of ‘ring of fire’. Beer was like adding something flammable to an existing fire. Believe me, not good.

    First Wednesday Hike of 2011 under new management took place today. After ten or eleven years the Hiking Wizard and his Assistant Wizard retired and stepped aside for a new manager. They leave long legs, bald heads and large shoes to fill for the new organizer. Lucky for NSH Cam The Ram Man stepped up to the plate to help kick start the new era of Wednesday Hikes. He was an obvious choice with his bald head and big feet. He has assured the Wizard and his Assistant he will work on the long leg handy cap he clearly suffers from. So for NSH this systemic change has created a major paradigm shift of epic proportions. We all should be proud of Cam The Ram Man….be careful when you call him this, his girlfriend told me she does not like it.

    Perhaps today was not as big as when NSH member Woody Pete was drilling a hole and slipped and the drill pocked a hole in his ear lobe then patched it up with a shinny door bolt. But, it was still a big event within the world of NSH Wednesday Hikers. It was so big that when Cam The Ram showed up at St David’s parking lot all the members stood back and bowed in his presence and offered chocolate cookies, brownies and Scotch for his support. A wonderful sight to watch.

    Now if you were not there today I can understand, maybe! When you awoke this AM and looked out the window it was not good. Especially after a week of sunshine. It was raining hard and in some area’s it was even snowing. So if you felt constipated, lethargic or just wanted a day of debauchery I could possibly understand. If you got to St David’s and decided to join The Wizard and his Assistant Wizard for a day of prayer and forgiveness I could possibly understand. If you showed up and decided it was raining to hard and BCMC looked more attractive I cannot understand. That is exactly what Stevie Wonderless Fitness King did, BCMC. Can you believe this guy. Like, he has thirty or forty years on me and can kick my butt from one end of the trail to the other. What kind of food does Ms Wonderless feed this guy. We are both the same height. We both have hearts with tar running through it. We both exercise but like he is on some other drugs then myself. Whatever he is on we need to drag it out of him and get some of his stash. Wonderless left us standing as he went off and conquered BCMC on his own. Man of steal.

    Anyways, after signing all the required NSH paper work and giving a word of blood oath to stick together we drove up to Holyburn to get a little exercise. We may of got half a kilometer up the highway and the rain went from ugliness to wonderful white snow. It was gorgeous. I know your saying I am glad I stayed at home because I have done Holyburn a thousand times but that was wrong thinking. First, we owed it to the new Wednesday Hike Coordinator to respect the fact he has stepped up to the plate to do something nobody else wanted. Secondly, the new guy will need to put up with the constant whining from the participants. Fourth, our new leader promised he would work on leg extensions so this might be the last time we see him with short stubs. Third, did I mention how gorgeous it was?

    Most Wednesday Hikers missed out on one heck of a day. Our CD thought we would just do a little warm up for bigger challenges to come on future Wednesday’s. From the parking lot he took a head count. It was confusing because the Korean Hiking Club arrived at the same time to hike Holyburn. There was like forty of them. Umbrella’s and snow shoes, tents and lawn chairs, gas stoves with china dishes, they come prepared with it all. Is it just me that noticed the Korean Club always seems to be at the same place NSH are for Wednesday hikes. How do they figured out this Wednesday NSH thing is an unknown mystery. Nothing was said on NSH web page about what would be done. The destination was decided at St David’s. The only conclusion I can come up with is The Wizard and his Assistant Wizard must have called the Korean Club before they went into the church for a day of forgiveness…..man they must have been real bad to have to spend the entire day in church!

    Back to the Korean’s. We took off and broke trail. The Korean Army fell into line behind and began their march. Looked like the French Legion going off to war. Visibility was about 200 meters. The trees were covered with a blanket of fresh snow. There was pre set meeting spots and members that fell out of line were dropped from the signup sheet. This NSH group meant business for the first hike of the year. We may have only been 49 of us but we moved like thousands. Constantly switching leaders to break trail we moved steadily but not fast. With all the work being shared we were on the first Wednesday Hike Summit in about an hour. It was a great team effort with many challenges but there we were on top of the world, together.

    We stood on top of our summit for the moment and gave high fives and enjoyed the blowing snow with all our comrades. It had been tough but we survived the conditions so we could fight another day. It was such an emotional moment it reminded me of Dylan Thomas poem: “Do not go gentle into the night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.” I know, I know, it was just one of those memorable moments that we all will remember until out last days. Very emotional.

    Another person stood up as best she could in the blasts of snow and said she had a confession to make. She said she did not want to make anyone envious from what she had to say at this moment. “But, I can still fit into the same earrings I wore in high school.” That was it. Very cool and real. Everyone broke down with tears of emotions and then applaud her efforts and challenges she must of endured to accomplish this feat. It was a very sincere and emotional moment for all.

    Once we packed up and ready to descend we all stood and lifted our left arm into the sky and chanted the infamous Buzz Lightyear famed mantra:”To Infinity and Beyond.”

    Thanks Cam. You are off to a great start, maybe even Infinity.

    ps everyone waited at the bottom of the hill until the last hiker was finished.

    pss no group picture today due to weather conditions.

    psss who said you cannot write a blog about nothing!

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