I arrived at the forest around 10 am. I would later discover this time was comparable to the third bowl of porridge that Goldilocks tasted-not too hot, and not too cold. This arrival time was not too early, and not too late.
Arriving at 10am meant there were other cars in the lot, but still a few spaces left. The parking is minimal here, and although I wouldn’t mind parking on the street, I do enjoy securing a space within the confines of an area where fast moving cars cannot nick the side of my vehicle. Other cars in the lot meant there were other people exploring the woods, which is a comforting sign for a solo adventurer.
Cars in the lot, but a space left for me. Not too hot, not too cold.
I’d not yet explored this forest, but upon my arrival I was immediately overcome with feelings. Feelings of joy, feelings of excitement, feelings of energy, feelings of adventure. How had I lived so close to this forest, yet never stepped foot on its soil?
These woods provided the illusion of being deep within the heart of a forest nestled below the mountains, but with a close proximity to the nearby roads. A common fear of solo adventurers is being so secluded that if something were to happen no one would know. These woods engulfed my being, but provided the comfort of safety should I need it.
I arrived at the forest planning to walk, but the abundance of energy I received provoked me to run. Not hard, and not far, a simple thirty minutes which turned out to be one of the best runs I have had in a long time. The depths of the forest has a way of slowing down time. I didn’t focus on pace, I didn’t focus on distance, I simply focused on movement. What felt good, what didn’t? Time moved quickly and slowly all at the same time.
The trails of dirt wove in and out of each other, reminding me of my childhood reading. I used to read books that allowed me to choose my own ending. “Go to pg. 167 for this kind of ending, or go to pg. 285 for this kind.” It allowed me to read and reread these books with a new story each time. The paths of this forest gave options that allowed me to cross similar paths from different angles, providing the continued illusion that this forest was larger than it really was.
I crossed paths with a few people, but there was so much space between us all that it was easy to feel alone. My favorite. This came in handy for me when my run took a turn for the worse. Everything felt great, but I had consumed a beautifully balanced cup of coffee before arriving at the trail. I gave no extra thought to this decision as I allowed the full bodied notes of cocoa and nuts slide off my tongue. It was a harmony of flavor I tend to get lost in.
It had been a while since coffee and running decided to scheme against me, but on this day they had.
There I was in the heart of this forest, with nothing but my car keys and a sense of endearment for my surroundings when the stomach discomfort hit me like a ton of bricks. I had no where to go but deeper among the trees. I prayed that the corner of earth I chose to stake claim of would provide me with enough privacy to release the demon within my gut.
Runners trots are no joke my friends, there is no shame in this game.
I grew a new appreciation for ferns this day, we bonded on a level I hope never to bond with them on again. I can still feel the spores on my skin. I left a piece of me in the forest that day, and we are tied together in a way I’ll remember forever. Thankfully for the forest, ferns have the ability to absorb pollution. I love plants.
Post expulsion I wandered the woods for another hour before calling it quits. I came upon abandoned sheds, the above tiny house nestled in the bushes, trails I didn’t get time to step foot on yet, and the below viewpoint. As I approached my car, others were waiting to claim my spot. Others had arrived to partake on their own adventure, I wondered if theirs would be similar to mine.
I look forward to my next adventure in the Grand Forest, the trees and winding paths quickly became a local favorite, but next time I think I’ll finish my coffee before I leave.
Q: Have you ever become one with the forest this way? Insert the *laughing with tears* emoji.
33 thoughts on “The Grand Forest – Making Friends with Ferns”
There’s a very good arboretum in san Francisco where I could get away from the city while in the middle of the city.
This legit was the most poetic beautiful description of having to poop outside. I have never felt this level of serenity and awe-inspiring nature you describe. And i have bonded with nature like this….. I don’t even know, at least 35 times.
I’m super proud of you – it really is not that bad using the outdoors as your area to do your business. Once again, all these pics make me want to visit asap and hike with you. Sigh. I’ll pack toilet paper for us. SO GORG.
Hahaha I have no problems using nature, and have before on my own terms, this day was just intense because well…it was not a clean pinch. 😂😂😂 I for some reason always think of you in these moments?
The DC area has surprisingly nice woods to wander in. I don’t do it often enough. Love this post. It combines one of my favorite things (ferns) with something I despise in a comical way (runners trots). I learned the hard way, avoid granola for breakfast. Ay!
You must go explore those woods! Great escape from the nearby political craze.
Gorgeous pics!!! So much greeeeeeen ❤
One time, I pooped 3 times one a single run. I had tissues for the first two…and luckily there were leaves for the last one. I couldn’t believe it! Those tacos from the night before…whew!
AHHHAHA yassss. This is why we’re friends.
That panoramic picture though! Looks like the real-life setting of Little Red Riding Hood!
Right!? It was amazing.
HAHAH, only every adventure race. I basically start feeling like a little creature of the woods by the end of it.
HA!! I love you. 🙂
I have definitely christened the forest and even sunflower field is a similar, although less explosive, fashion as you. I figure it’s my way of giving back to the soil. 🙂
OMG I remember this. I miss you!!
An Unrefined Vegan
Oh my gosh, you poor thing!!! I used to live in fear of the trots. Tried to time “things,” if you know what I mean. I’ve had some close calls but thankfully I never had to improvise while out enjoying Mother Nature.
Bahaaaah. It made for a great story. 🙂
So much green! It looks lovely and I’m sure the ferns will remember you. I mean…how could they forget?
They will never forget…
Oh you poor thing! That’s the worst to be in the middle of nowhere and have “issues.” At least you were in a beautiful, serene place. Ha ha. All of your pictures are absolutely gorgeous!!
HA! I made it work, I suppose my rugged mindset has set me up for success. Although I was a bit uncomfortable until I got home. 🙂
It sounds like a great forest to hike in! And you’ve definitely.. make your impression on it haha
I did, I did indeed. 🙂
LOL and love it. Of course I have bonded with nature. If you spend any time doing outdoor things its almost inevitable. -Kat
Yasss, no other way to love nature. 😂
That was such an amazing description and a great story. To convey it and not say it, and for it to be flowing throughout from start to rising action to climax to…fern and other things falling action..and finish, so good. I came close one time on a run myself a few years ago, thought I’d never make it back in time, but somehow did and was never happier to have found a bathroom than in that one moment.
Hahaha thank you for noticing the story telling aspect of this all, that was my goal. I’d only come close once on a 9 mile run a few years ago, but managed to waddle home.
Hahaha! I love that you made friends with the ferns in a deep way. No shame in that at all! Beautiful pictures of the forest!
No shame at all. I’m a wide open book. HA!
Pingback: Poo Poo Point – A Place to Purge your Thoughts | Blissfulbritt
Pingback: Success for Less – an Individualistic Approach | Blissfulbritt