He left the train station behind him. It was still a 2 km walk before he reached the outskirts of his beloved forest. His olive drab Berghaus was
fully packed with survival gear, clean clothing mostly for the trainride home, two liters of water and food for 5 days.
He loved his backpack. It was the symbol for the short periods, of what he saw as freedom, that he got to enjoy from time to time. It was rugged and
made for this. Everything and more than he needed was on his back, and home would be wherever he laid his head for at least 10 days.
He didn't like walking in populated areas with his survival gear. People always looked at him funny and right now it was pretty obvious that he was
planning on camping out in the forest, something that isn't exactly legal in a lot of places in Europe. There was no way that he would be able to
reach a hotel or camping before nightfall, walking into the direction he was going.
His rule was, that once he had reached the forest, he shouldn't be seen by anyone. He always tried to stay of the trails, pushing right through the
This wasn't completely legal either.
With terrorist attacks in Paris, a couple of 100 km away, people, and authorities, were on edge, and his somewhat tactical appearance could cause
suspicion, even though he doesn't fit the description. But most importantly, seeing other people and signs of civilisation would ruin his experience.
Hikers who stay on the beaten path don't get to experience the magical places he discovers, nor do they get to experience encounters with the
wildlife, like he does.
This was the end of the road. He jumped a barbwire fence and started to cross the meadow. The forest lay in the distance.
Finally he entered the forest and it felt like a warm blanket was pulled over him. He felt all giddy as he was greeted by the trees. He took a deep
breath of the fresh forest air and could smell and almost taste the spruce trees.
It felt like coming home.
It was still a 4 hour hike before he would reach the valley where he planned on setting up his first camp, going East.
The sound of lapping water rose above the stillness. He entered a gully in which three seperate streams joined together. There was a very distinct
energy to the place. Seeing and hearing the element making its way through rock and soil had an existential quality to it.
Not to mention drinking it.
After taking it all in for a minute he pushed on. He could never really just fully enjoy a moment.
There were two things preventing him from being completely satisfied, the thought that he had to get back to normal life in two weeks, and that this
forest, although beautiful , was just not wild and remote enough. On the other hand, if he would break a leg now, noone would find him there. Not any
time soon anyways. There was no cell phone coverage. And several years ago a hiker died in this area, and his body wasn't found until a few years
That reasured him.
But living in places like Alaska was his dream.
For now he had to settle for occassional hiking trips to this region. At least he was still able to find places that made him feel like he actually
was in a real wilderness.
A grown man playing outside in the dirt. Alone. On his own. Free of electrostress and energy drainage.
He hauled himself and his backpack up onto a steep hillside and gazed down into the valley when he reached the top. The place gave him a feeling of
Going down the hill made his calves burn more than going up.
He crossed a small river, hopping from rock to rock, and climbed up onto the high bank.
He had to make one more push to get up the opposing hill on the other side of the narrow valley.
Exhausted from running up that hill he threw off his backpack and fell down on the cushy forest floor, recovering his breath. No pain no gain. It took
some effort but he was where he wanted to be.
In the sky above him he saw a dove fly by.....
To be continued soon.
edit on 21-4-2016 by DutchMasterChief because: (no reason given)