Monday, November 24, 2008

Friendly fall

Date: Nov. 23
Mileage: 26.2
November mileage: 662.9

Today I went "snowshoeing" up the Mount Jumbo trail without ever actually strapping my snowshoes on. The snow was just too uneven - as much as thigh-deep out in the open, but barely covering the ground beneath the trees. By the time I reached the really steep pitches of the mountain, sinking up to my knees in snow was preventing backsliding much more effectively than the snowshoes could.

I took what must have been a rather spectacular fall on the way down. It's a shame no one else was around to see it. Back at elevations where there was only about a half-inch of snow on the ground, I managed to wedge my foot beneath a root protruding out of the dirt. It completely halted what at the time was a pretty fast descent, and sent my body tipping forward down a 60-degree slope. Many seconds seemed to pass as I dropped through dead space. I actually had time to think about pulling my arms to my chest and did so - thereby possibly avoiding a broken wrist. Memory has a way of rewriting these moments as long periods - the way entire lifetimes can pass before eyes in a flash - but I swear I went through the motions of denial, terror, and finally acceptance before I hit. Shoulder first, then chin, turning a complete cartwheel before landing on my back. I laid on the ground somewhat stunned for a few seconds before I realized that I didn't feel hurt at all. I didn't even really feel the shock of impact. I stood up to brush the slush and mud of my clothes, making sure nothing was broken, and wondering just how I came out of the fall unscathed. As I looked at the ground where my body had brushed away the thin layer of snow, I saw thick clumps of moss. The moss was covering another layer of spongy mulch. I knelt and pressed my hands against the soil. It was as soft as a pillow. Karma smiled on me today. It was a simple act of tripping, but it just as easily could have gone badly.

I remain a complete klutz on my feet. That's the main reason I'll never be a trail runner.


  1. That would have looked great on Youtube!

    Glad you OK though. You must have appeased the trail gods this year!

  2. Nothing like a little bit of "good" karma.

    That snow looks beautiful. I'm waiting....

  3. I've addressed the concept of "good bad luck" a couple of times over at Two Wheels. You had the good luck to have bad luck in a pplace where no harm would come to you.

    The universe stays balanced, even if we sometimes have a bit of trouble doing so.

  4. Only two things can make a person falling down a bad thing. Getting hurt and not getting hurt without anyone there to witness it.

  5. If you keep pushing it, it's only a matter of time!

  6. Falling down while hiking in the snow ?....that's so unlike you.

  7. This was your chance to thank God you weren't hurt badly, but instead thanked Karma. I'm glad you weren't hurt, thank God.

  8. Glad you are OK! I discovered last year that if you are clumsy enough, it is possible to do a face plant while snowshoeing. I tripped over a hidden alder and my face was in the snow before I could even think. That was the day my friends coined the term "technical snowshoeing". :)

  9. you should wear full downhill body armor at all times, even when brushing your teeth. and carry your rosary at all times. thank the pope personally for your safety. after all it is Him, and not you, who controls your destiny.
    THANK YOU, Ratzinger, for breaking your fall so gently!

  10. Wow Jill,

    That reminds me of a time years ago snowshoeing with a friend and falling into a hole made by a buried small fir tree. I went in knees first and couldn't get to my straps.

    My friend sat on one of his shoes and dug with the other and got me out. Without him I wouldn't be writing this.

    Amazing, it's thanksgiving... guess what I'll be thankful for.


  11. I think I might try snowshoeing this year. I have never been before.

  12. I suggest everybody buy an autographed copy of Jill's book NOW. At the rate she's going they might just become collectibles soon. ;)

  13. Just got your book this morning. No trouble with Lulu and quick shipping. Very professional looking layout. Now I've got something better to do as I lay bloated on the couch than watch the Detroit Lions.
    How many have you sold?
    Maybe you could buy yourself a pacel of books and we could get our lbs's to stock em? I'd ask mine.

  14. What a pretty picture, I love all the snow. And I'm glad you weren't hurt.
    I was wondering, are you selling your book anywhere in town, or can I only get it through Lulu?
    :) Elizabeth

  15. Glad you are not hurt. Snowshoeing? I've got just a very vague idea of what you were doing (or trying to do LOL). Are these the thingies you put on your shoes to give you a wider surface area so you can walk on top of the snow rather than sinking knee deep? Please excuse my ignorance.

  16. I too could never become a trail runner. I live in fear of the twisted ankle. That's why I love the uphill hike here RMNP so I can look around and enjoy my surroundings, the hike down my eyes are glued to the trail and the next step I take....sigh, it's hell getting old.
    Happy Thanksgiving Jill!
    PS. Lulu worked well for me too!

  17. lovely, funny description - thank goodness for rainforest moss!


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