Monday, September 23, 2013
Weekending, a river walkabout
It felt so good to get outside this weekend. Scratch that. It felt freaking awesome to get back in the river this weekend. The minute my hiking boots hit the water, the tread slipping slightly, my body seemed to reboot.
Dropping temperatures, lower river flows and the autumn equinox coincided with my somewhat spontaneous need to find wilderness and minimize the number of people and buildings in my immediate vicinity. Luckily, I found two friends who didn't think I was completely insane for wanting to hike through a river. They focused their questioning of my sanity on my insistence that we strike out before sunrise.
Still, they acquiesced. The car was loaded with caffeine, river shoes, cell phones, apples, and a very excited Serena as we headed toward Baltimore and the Patapsco River. Once there, we transformed into intrepid explorers, searching for the perfect walking sticks among woody debris and setting important walkabout rules (i.e., crotch deep is our limit and what we use to determine the point we'll turn back).
The Patapsco's sand and rock strewn bed provided stable footing for our trek with depths that ranged from ankle-deep and higher. The water itself was clear and crisp. Rock and sand outcrops provided an interesting change of pace and the opportunity for treasure hunting. However, the sections where the water flowed faster, sliding over rock in a series of riffles, were my siren song.
What's your siren song?