Outside Sunday

Early Sunday morning October 18th, Dr. T and I went out hiking King Mountain Trail in Gatineau Park. It was a beautiful and fairly cold morning. Fall is my favourite season, so I wanted to make sure I got out there to really appreciate the spectacular natural show.

The trail starts out with a somewhat steep ascent. At least, it was steep for me. I was very quickly out of breath. During that first climb, I was in a panic thinking "what did I get myself into?!" But, being a little proud, there was no way I was going to back out, even though the thought did cross my mind.

Dr. T is used to this kind of stuff because he actually has to do it sometimes for work. AND he has to carry heavy equipment while doing so. I kind of felt bad for him that he had to slow his pace so that I could keep up. Of course, Dr. T, being the gentleman he is, didn't once let on that it bothered him at all. He was encouraging and patient. When the descent was steep, he'd help me out. When I needed to catch my breath, he waited patiently and talked to me about the forest we were in. When I needed to blow my nose, he found nice big leaves for me to use. (I made him look away while I used them though...)

We stopped a few times along the way to take in the view. It was absolutely beautiful! I was filled with awe. We're definitely lucky to live in this part of the world! At some point along the way, flurries gently fell which added to the beauty of the scenery.

A few things did bother me during the hike though. Like my lung capacity. I was often out of breath while climbing. That felt a little embarrassing to me. It was also frustrating because if it wasn't for that, I'm sure I would've been better able to keep up. And that thought lead me to think of my dad and how much he must've suffered near the end of his life never being able to catch his breath. My dad wasn't one to complain, but he would mention to me once in a while when it got too much for him to bear that he felt embarrassed and angry that he wasn't able to do what used to be so easy for him. He was definitely with me on the hike.

Another thing that bothered me was that my glasses kept fogging up. It made hiking and stopping to check out the views a little unpleasant. My flexibility also needs work. I want moving my limbs to be easier so that I can reach and get to where I want to go.

So my solution to these problems? I will work on anaerobic exercises so that I'm not so out of breath. When I go for my walks, I'll try to choose routes where I know I'll have hills to climb. I will look into laser eye surgery so that I don't have to wear glasses anymore. (The eye surgery is not just for hiking. I've thought about it over the years, but I just never had the guts or the money to go through with it.) As for the flexibility, well, I need to add stretching exercises. Maybe I'll try yoga. I've never done it before and it seems to be very popular. There might be something to that.

After the hike, we went canoeing on the Rideau River above Black's Rapids. That was also beautiful! We saw a little group of black ducks. Some of the sights I saw really made me want to start drawing and painting again. So inspiring! Unfortunately, Dr. T's seat broke not long after we had gone out, so the trip was cut a little short.

I'm happy that my body carried my through these activities, especially the hike. I'm happy I found out what I need to work on for next year's hiking trip in the Adirondacks. I'm happy that I was right about Dr. T being a good hiking partner. I'm happy I got to see such beautiful sights. At some points during our activities I was filled with such gratitude to be able to experience all of this. I just wished I was able to save more of it to memory. The time seemed to go by so fast!

This is a photo I took from one of the view points on the trail. It really doesn't do it justice. It's such beautiful breathtaking landscape! It felt like my eyes weren't big enough to take it all in. My iPhone camera certainly couldn't capture it well enough either. So although there were more beautiful scenery, I didn't even bother trying to photograph it. There's really nothing like experiencing the real thing.


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