Friday, October 5, 2012

You know what? I think I'm gonna start Hiking

Swallow Cliff Woods - Palos Hills, IL

Trail Tails begin...

     I've always liked the outdoors... magazines with pictures of the woods and wildlife, movies with scenic vistas, rolling hills and valleys, snowy peaks and fertile forests, it all piqued my interests. I subscribed to National Geographic, watched Discovery and History Channel. I thoroughly enjoyed nature while being separated from it. I figured "Hell, why do I need to go see whatever Forest, or some name Mountain? They show the good stuff on TV". 
     Then one day I came across A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson. It's such an amazing book I read it twice!  He writes about the trails history as well as his personal journey on the trail. It was an easy read, very funny at times too. Seriously check it out, his (overweight)friend "Katz" is hilarious! The back and forth banter between them... I smile just thinking about it. But anyway, this isn't a book blog... OK maybe a little who knows? It's the first post.

A picture of my Rottweiler Jesse
     So where was I? Oh... In July I adopted a puppy from my local ASPCA, 2 years prior my Rottweiler Jesse died. I couldn't even think about another dog for a long time. She was an awesome dog, lean, powerful, playful, kind and protective. Unfortunately she was VERY skittish when it came to fireworks, July 4th 2007 she got away from me and was lost for 2 days before I got a call from the local police giving me the bad news. She was supposed to be my hiking partner. We were set to go, had plans to hit up the small trails locally and then eventually make our way to the mother of all trails; The Appalachian Trail. Not a Thru-Hike but, Section Hiking it season by season. It was going to be an adventure for the both of us. Clear our thoughts, do some soul searching and really get to know what we really wanted out of life. When I say "We" I mean "I" because as we all know, Dogs thoughts are ALWAYS clear, their souls are PURE, and all they REALLY want out of life is a loving home and LOTS of TREATS!  Two years... two years go by, I still miss her.

     Eventually though, I wanted another dog. When I put Jesse into the incinerator for cremation I made an unbreakable promise; I would never forget her and that I would rescue a dog(from a shelter) in her memory and give it the best life I could. Cheesy I know but hell, I loved her and I don't care if people think it's ridiculous, it's MY blog, I do what I want :) So two Years later, I adopt this tiny thing from the local ASPCA shelter, she and her family were found on the side of the road by 80/94 and Calumet Avenue. It's a DAMN busy area. She's a Mastiff mix, not sure with what though. She was about 9 weeks old when I got her, shy, nervous etc. She quickly came out of her shell though, a couple of weeks of socializing her and she can't get enough of people and the attention they give her. After she was about 3 months old I took her on our first trail. The Swallow Cliff Woods in Palos Hills, IL. It wasn't anything spectacular but, my god did it feel nice to be away from the hustle and bustle. After that first hike I was Hooked! So was  she! We did about 5 miles that day, taking main trails ,exploring side trails and getting lost in the woods.
Trail Blazing Pup

That look...

The next post will be all about that trip, here are some teaser pictures though. I hope this first blog wasn't too terrible for you. Please leave you comments and suggestions if you have any. But, be civil, I have it set so anyone can post comments and I don't have to "approve them" don't make me have to do that please.

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