Hilly and I were hiking Sunday at 11,000 feet, in the mountains above Aspen. Magical in the fall leaves, the astonishing vistas… and great exercise, especially at that altitude. (The day before I biked The Maroon Bells, a 30 mile round trip, ten of ‘em almost straight up; not a cinch at altitude, believe me. Heart rate at 80-85% of max all the way)
Crossing a stream… a rock shifts… down I go. Pretty hard: Bloody lip, twisted thumb, bloody knees. I am going to look a little goofy at a talk tomorrow in Halifax Nova Scotia.
I don’t mind that but I do mind this: I am in decent shape but I am not sure I would have fallen that hard, 20 years ago. I landed hard and felt seriously disoriented for a moment. I think that’s new. It may have been a demonstration of what Billy Fabrociini says: as we get older, the margin for error shrinks, no matter what. We have to be more careful. Rats! I hate that. But I suspect it’s true.
On the other hand, if I had not been in decent shape, it would likely have been a lot worse. Instead of a fat lip, I would have had a mouth full of bloody chicklets. Whatever… it is a joy to be deep in the hills at my tender age. If I have to slow down a hair, fine. But I ain’t quitting. No, no, no.