I love the great outdoors but I hate summer -or really the heat that summer brings. I’m not a fan of being hot, it makes me grumpy… give me autumn or winter any day!
I know by now you’re probably wondering why I’m ranting about summer during the glorious days of October. Well, the photos I’m sharing with you were taken about three weeks ago and those last days of September were just as hot as when the season began. That’s why I was a bit hesitant when a friend invited us on a very spontaneous trip to Cossatot River State Park in Wickes, AR.
I decided to go because I’ve never been hiking (I didn’t grow up in an “outdoorsy” family), I needed the exercise and a distraction from the stresses from planning my annual renaissance faire. It’s impossible to answer emails about Tudor garb whilst climbing rocks!
About an hour into our drive to the site, it began to pour. My husband and I saw the storm on the radar before we left and we tried to warn the others but they were all sure it would dissipate before we got there. Nope.
Luckily, another couple who came along had a stash of umbrellas in their vehicle and was kind enough to lend us one. I don’t mind getting wet, but my baby girl was down to her last change of clothes after projectile vomiting in the van and the temperature was dropping a little too much to for the comfort of a damp and nauseated baby.
This particular part of the park is called Cossatot Falls. When the river is low, you can go on a wonderfully challenging trek over the huge rocks and boulders. I absolutely loved working my way over the rocks, but when I saw one person from my group slip can fall I began to get very nervous about my baby strapped to my husband’s back. As we moved further down the river the rocks became bigger, taller, more jagged and more steep. Even though my husband is a very experienced and nimble hiker, I just couldn’t bear the thought of him make one bad step with our youngest on his back.
I suggested we should find a trail on solid ground instead and everyone agreed.
Ironically enough it was me who had the accident on the “safer ” trail I suggested we take! On the way back down I took a step too close to the edge of the narrow trail, the soft wet soggy ground gave way, I slid off the trail and found myself hanging on to a little cliff with my claws in the ground like a cat. The two ladies with me helped me climb back up.If I had lost my grip for whatever reason, I would’t have fallen into oblivion or anything like that. I would have slid a few yards little ways until a hit a tree. Climbing back up would have been out of the question as the ground was too soft, but I’m pretty sure I would have been a-ok with the aid of a rope. Now had I had fallen anywhere else, I might not have been so lucky. Yikes!
The ladies that had to pull me back up were a little shaken but I was laughing the whole time at the irony of my accident (and laughing is also my way of coping with embarrassment). I walked away from that tiny little accident unscathed and most of all grateful that I wasn’t the one wearing the baby!
Now allow me to talk a bit about what I wore for my first trip. I’m a skirts and dresses kind of gal. I rarely wear pants but I definitely knew that a dress might not be the best choice of attire for an outdoor adventure. These organic cotton pants from Soul Flower were absolutely perfect for my adventure. They had enough stretch to allow me to climb rocks and steep hills, the drawstrings waist gave me the ability to secure my pants high enough on my waist so I’m could keep the hem from dragging the ground and they were durable enough to withstand a “cliff-dangle” without a single snag or tear!
Will I try hiking again? Of course!
But I think next time, for the sake of my nerves, we’ll just leave the baby with a sitter.