Point Reyes Redux

2006 February 25 to 26

Point Reyes

At 1 pm Em dropped me off at Limantour Beach and I began walking south along the shore until Sculptured Beach where I cut up to the Coast Trail. After a ways along the empty byway I saw scat and exclaimed "DOOKIE". As it happened, 1 seconds later I came upon people for the first time in over an hour.

My well thought out plan was to meander along, reach Wildcat Camp late at night, eat, and go to sleep. However, when I arrived at 4:15 pm I just wasn't ready for bed. It's not that I went fast, rather, I just never stopped. After making and eating dinner on the bluff I walked a bit more along the beach to Alamere Falls and almost set up camp at the top. But I didn't. Instead I studied the map and decided to sleep on a 480-foot peak overlooking the ocean. Said peak is south of the falls and west of Pelican Lake. By the time I got to the top it was 6:15 pm, dark, and windy. I climbed into my bivy and went to sleep. 2 hours later I left. The wind had picked up and was flapping the bivy fabric so much I couldn't sleep. 2 hours later I moved again, seems the wind was following me. At 10 am the next day I met Em somewhere on the paved of Mesa Road, at a point further south than indicated on the map. We drove north to the Tomales Bay Oyster Company and had a jolly good time with the Chez Panisse crew despite the rain.

I think this qualifies as my first successful solo backpacking trip. Although I missed Em (we were apart for 21 hours) I enjoyed myself despite overcast and cold weather and at night I wasn't afraid of being eaten by dingo's despite being alone a peak rather than in the well populated Wildcat Camp. In fact, I really enjoyed lying out at night watching the sky and listening to the wind in the bivy. For me, being in closed off tent amplifies irrational fears.

Because I enjoyed the bivy experience so much, I was very sad to find significant condensation inside the bivy in the morning, despite the top of the bivy being bone dry. The condensation caused quite a bit of loss of loft of my down quilt. Had this been a multiple day trip with no chance to dry out the quilt I would have been screwed. But it wasn't so I ambled south towards my ill defined rendezvous with Poobie. At one point I found myself, quite unconsciously, punting along with my stick in my right hand and my left hand in my pocket, as if I was out for stroll. For some reason this pleased me to no end leaves us with a nice mental picture for ending this narrative.

In retrospect the story cannot end for while typing this at my kitchen table I have had an epiphany. I now realize that during that brief moment I achieved a Zen state of pure empty bliss. "Does even a dog have Buddha-nature?" asked the student. Poobie smiled and softly said "no".