I'm skeptical. I don't think overly so. But I have to admit, the prospect of being toyed with by 5 or 6 hares, Miata-owning hares even, gave me the shiverin' willies, not to mention the witherin' shivvies. I even brought the dog along for company in case I got lost (shut up). Surprisingly enough, this band of decidedly on-road car owners (the cars, not the owners) (though I do suppose one implies the other) managed to get off-road a little. Extremely off road, for a while there. There was continuity, no major fuckups to speak of, the beer found the end, etc. etc. So there you have it. I suppose you want details. I hate you.(I'm moody today, my doctor took away my Phen-Fen and I'm out of chocolate! I wish that Oprah was on all day! Anyway, back to Be-Dazzling moo-moos!)
We finally got the hell away from the toy cars, down a steep ravine, across a creek, and into a thorny patch of woods. I love it when hounds are whining 5 seconds into a run. Across a dusty construction area, we navigated a few tractor trailers and hit the road. This began a longiish portion of the trail, dominated primarily by roads and railroad tracks, punctuated by a few tricky checks. The pack stayed pretty close-knit, thanks to some nice checks and some forays into the overgrowth. And the undergrowth. It was along one of these roads that Defeshit had the bright idea to hop some razorwire. He's averaging 1.37 stitches/mile this year.
The pooch was starting to wilt in the hot sun out on the roads at this point, and I was totally sympathetic. As we veered left onto a powerline ROW, We picked up the pace a little in hope that trail would soon cross a creek. Instead, we were treated to a daunting hill. Manis hauled ass up the hill, but then she called it quits, and we sat in the shade while the entire pack passed us by, including, eventually, the perennialy butchered Defeshit, and his keepers Afterbirth and Sleezy Rider. The dog and I sat watching the bizarre Cambodian barbecue below, with me poking her once in a while to check for life signs. After I decided that the dog was no longer tired, but just acting bitchy, I carried her through the party and down into the woods across the street, at which point I put her down and dragged her along like a slinky toy. Salvation, however, was close at hand.
We came to a swamp. The Swamp. Manis jumped in and recharged, while I weighed my options. I could hear folks off to the left, and I sure as hell wasn't ready to die for the cause, so we boxed over to the creek. As it turns out, probably a fortuitous choice. The funniest story I heard that day combined Fergie Dick (with the ubiquitous 50lb pack), soft swamp-bottom muck, and gravity doing its part to acqaint them, intimately. Redneck Mutha responded to some feeble cries for help as the water mark rose higher on Fergie's chest by telling him to for christ's sake take the damn pack off. Fergie Dick, never one to back down from a challenge, somehow managed to haul the pack out of the mud with his shoes still on his feet. When I asked him about his near-death experience later, his response was enlightening: "Ahw Niplets, that was nothing. What scares me is I've been pissin' up blood!" Someone is going to have to drug his milk and haul his sedated ass to a doctor before he implodes.
The trail left the creek after a bit and scrambled up a hill leading to a railroad trestle. Then it was on-in to a little opening in the woods next to the railroad tracks. Sorry I don't have the roster, I'll add it and the down-downs to the on-line version (see www.randomc.com/~byork/ph3.htm).
Announcement: Party on Sept 27th ... Anthony's
Pizza in Decatur. It shouldn't suck.