I decided to start the new year off with a renewed commitment to take the dogs hiking more. Bright and early New Year’s morning I loaded up the dogs and my new camera and headed off to the park. The morning was cold and clear with a moderate breeze out of the northwest. I figured that most or all of the new year’s revelers would still be in bed and we would be all by ourselves on the trails. I was right, no one was around. The dogs were excited, pacing around in the back of the station wagon as I parked the car. The barking started and didn’t stop until I opened the back and let them out.
Walking down the long hill to the trailhead, was the easy part. The hard part would be coming back to the car and having to walk UP the hill after hiking four or five miles. I definitely need to get a pedometer. The dogs ran back and forth, sniffing the air, the ground and everything in between. Charlie as usual was hunting. Charlie is always hunting. He lives to hunt and hunts everything. It doesn’t matter what, mice to deer, as long as it moves and breathes air, he hunts it. AJ and Orso were more concerned with sticks and branches to play tug of war with. Chest slams, grabbing the back of the neck and wrestling was the highlight of the morning.
We were about a mile and a high from the car and I had already taken a ton of pictures, when we crossed a creek and started up the hill on the other side. I stepped on a frozen patch of dirt and ice, and started to slip. I knew I was going down so I made sure to save the camera and grabbed it with both hands to hold it up and out of the way, leaving me to fall hard with the only thing to break my fall was the large pointed rock and my thigh. I felt this burning searing pain in my left thigh and thought for a minute that I wasn’t sure I could get up. As I slowly stood upright, Charlie ran up to make sure that I was okay. As soon as the burning subsided and I realized nothing was broken, I headed off down the trail with the dogs.
After I got back to the car and loaded up the dogs, it dawned on me that it would probably be prudent to start packing a backpack with a small first aid kit, just in case. The bruise didn’t show up right away. It took a day for my thigh to turn purple, but when it finally did, it TURNED PURPLE! I haven’t been able to lay on my left side in bed all week. I guess I’m lucky I didn’t break anything, skin or bones.