Eventually, we parked the car where it said, no parking and trudged up a hill. (Those tire tracks were there already). And the first view, with this emptiness and a few trees – Lester was already far away – and I yelled to him, “Ah this is great!” He’s usually far ahead of me since I walk slowly and stop to look at every little thing.
I know that this image doesn’t capture the feeling I had as I stood atop the hill with the Hudson barely visible off to the left. But this is what we had been looking for. Lots of grumbling as we approached it about State Parks, and rules and regulations. A sign proclaimed that this was the height of cayote season and to be on guard against cayotes. I asked Les if cayotes were dangerous and he said they weren’t, as a rule. That you could feed them from your hand. I think he was mistaking them for dogs in the dog park.
I used to think, since I’m such a solitary person, that I could’ve been a trapper or a mountain man in another life, and instead of coming back with pictures I’d come back into town with furs. I doubt that since I’m afraid to sleep out in the forest But I cross streets with cars zooming around and bike messengers going the wrong way and bank robberies and con-men on streets and I’ve survived that. Would the wilderness be different. After all, when I was a kid, I had a fake-fur Daniel Boone hat. I wasn’t born in a mountain house in Tennessee – as the song goes – but I liked the idea.
You just have to be born into it. Lots of people tell me that they never drive into the city because they’re afraid of getting into an accident. It’s just what you’re used to – don’t you think. And this sort of exploration is all new for me.
I think that after a few months I’ll be able to feed cayotes by hand.
When I was in Yosemite, I did go off alone into the woods and come across bears. I had read what you were supposed to do (don’t remember what that was anymore) but I do remember what I did: back away from them slowly with my arms over my head, which was supposed to make me look bigger.
The park is called Rockwood Hall Park – but we didn’t find any halls there.
Anyway – we made it to the park that didn’t allow parking – and wandered around. More later…
Here’s the original before any processing: