Monday, July 05, 2004

What a bust

So I went on up over to the coast this weekend and hiked some pretty decent terrain, really secluded, and mostly spent time by myself. It was swept and blown and Lord knows that the sea air lowers my blood pressure by a good twenty percent. I spent several hours just parked on the sand, taking it in as the wind blew and slowly rearranged the face of it all, before heading up to C-21, my favorite campsite on the Drake trailhead.

Wouldn't you know it but several kids were camped out in C-21, completely oblivious to the noon checkout time. I hiked around the basin a while, so they could see me, but they didn't catch on. They kept playing cards and guitars and chattering and wearing their pants down low and pretty soon I was ready to foot it back to the ranger station but then lo and behold the ranger pulled into the clearing. Relieved, I watched and waited for him to escort the delinquents past the perimeter.

After a while of bumping around in his truck and inspecting the water spigot and outhouses, the ranger finally rolled up to their campsite. I was ready for the sparks to really fly, for the kids to start stuffing their pots and pans into their sleeping bags and high-tail it for the horizon, but no such justice awaited me. He didn't so much as compare their site ticket to the carbon of their check-in before they were offering him can beers and cigarettes. I do not doubt that one of the proffers was a joint. In fact, there is probably some sort of criminal cohesion going on between that covey of youth and the obviously corrupt ranger team, whereby marijuana contraband and psilocybin mushrooms are traded in exchange for lenience in campground tickets.

Needless to say I attempted no deal with that foul corruption and struck a simple shelter in a crevasse off the beaten path. In the morning I observed several Heronus Parlaticus and happened across a small bed of Preaching Clams. Such is the majesty of the outdoors, and even though the experience is continually blighted by thugs, I shall proceed with my explorations.