On the way down the mountain I meet four teenage girls with backpacks. Then three more and an adult. Then strung out along the trail for a mile four more, then three more. Snippets of conversation: “She’s nice and all that, but she’s not really my friend.”
Then four more. I lose track after that. Another group of eight, perhaps, with two adults carrying their own backpacks plus a knapsack on their fronts, presumably for the girl wearing a boot on her right foot. I imagine the angst of that accident, that she would miss the trip.
Good gawd. Are they all together? Whether or not, are they all going to camp at Lena Lake? Later I meet a pair of young adult women. I don’t warn them that their night might not be serene, or that there might not be enough campsites.
It reminds me of my own junior high backpacking adventures from Camp Kenneydell Girl Scout Camp. I looked into each of their faces and think, “My god, I was that young once.” Happy Birthday to me.