I've had a bout of writer's block lately. The kind where I stare at a blank screen for twenty minutes before relenting to Twitter browsing, and repeat. The main problem, I think, its that I'm a hopeless news junkie. Lately my morning coffee reading has left me with malaise bordering on despair. What do I do that matters? Nothing. What do any of us do that matters? We're just digging deeper holes. Well, you see where I'm at. It's that existential despair that all of us battle, with varying degrees of optimism and denial and faith. And it's not like this every minute of the day. I'm happy where I'm at and generally excited about the future. But the trepidation remains.
Corrine stayed ahead of me the whole time on her skis. I saw her on the return near the pass, and informed her that I was going to spend as much time as possible on the divide, because I never had a chance to explore while racing the White Mountains 100. I parked the bike on a tripod and attempted to hike toward one of the bald peaks looming overhead. I hoped I'd find a wind crust, but every step off the "trail" — which had only been first broken by two BLM machines, two days prior — sank to my hips in crusty snow. Instead, I walked down the other side of the pass and found a nice place to sit on my backpack, gazing at the peaks until I began to shiver.
The White Mountains can do amazing things for both body and soul.
Now I'm rambling again. But it was a wonderful respite, worth every air mile. I loved every predictable and unpredictable step. And, even more, I loved spending three days in the wilderness without outside contact. The news I returned to on Sunday was the most dispiriting yet, and I wanted to run back to Cache Mountain as fast as my legs would carry me.
Instead I headed home to Colorado, where life is still good.