Sunday, June 28, 2009

Old Man Power

As a wee lad of 14, I never understood how my old, out of shape scout masters could keep hiking mile after mile, even after the boys were long spent. And now, at the tender age of 29, I think finally get it: “Old Man Power.”

On Friday, I had the singular honor of leading the scouts on our first overnight hike of the summer. One upside of living in the Seattle area is our proximity to spectacular wilderness areas. Within an hour's drive, we can make it to a surprising number of trailheads. The downside is that one million other people also have easy access.

We reached Pratt Lake in good time. Nevertheless, the two lakeside camping areas were already taken. Longing for a little solitude (as well as our own lakeside access), we pressed forward to Lake Tuscohatchie. Upon arriving, we found the perfect spot nestled between some boulders and the lake's outlet. Unfortunately, another group had already staked their claim.

I glanced at my buddy's watch and was surprised to see it was already after 8:00PM. The boys were hungry and tired. And then it hit me. I felt great. I had it. I had the “Power." Turns out that Old Man Power is mostly in the mind. It won't get you there quickly, but it'll keep you going long after all the young guns have burned themselves out.

The boys trudged back down to Pratt Lake, grumbling about fatigue and hunger. I, on the other hand, had a nice steady, walk.

Left: The encampment near Pratt Lake; Top right: View of Mt. Rainier; Bottom Right: Ollalie Lake (we took a swim here – note the snow on the far shore)

1 comment:

wheelerdealer said... any of these old, fat, outta shape scoutmasters have names?