On the Trail: Alone in the ‘wilderness’ | AspenTimes.com

On the Trail: Alone in the ‘wilderness’

Jeanne McGovern

It was one of those mornings, after one of those long holiday weekends. I needed just a half-hour to myself. You know, to get some exercise and clear my head a bit. My dog, Molly, was in a similar state; she needed to run and think about whatever it is dogs think about when they’re sprinting and sniffing through the woods.Of course, life being what it is, the best I could manage was a quick hike up the Hunter Creek Trail between dropping the kids off at preschool and getting to work just a little bit late. Experience told me it wouldn’t be the peaceful, backcountry experience I was seeking. Just last week the trail was busier than the Smuggler superhighway at 5:30 p.m. on a weekday. But, hey, something is better than nothing, right? And yesterday, it was far better than that.From the minute I set foot on the Lani White Trail until the minute I got back to my Centennial condo, I saw no one. Even standing on the Benedict Bridge for a few minutes, listening to the still-raging creek below, I didn’t see anyone. No hikers, no bikers, no camera-toting tourists. It felt like not another living soul – save the birds, squirrels and bugs that are supposed to be there – was out. It was eerie, but excellent.What are the odds of that happening – especially on a day when you can really use it? I don’t know, but I’m not placing any bets on it happening again any time soon. Rather, I’ll just remember that one time Molly and I were all alone on the Hunter Creek Trail on a beautiful midsummer morning.

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