I really wanted to hike to Lost Lake because I can be lazy and it was a shorter distance. Dad wanted to go to Minam Lake because he hiked there each summer as a child. My cousin couldn't decide. He pulled out a penny and we flipped for it. I was secretly hoping it would land on TAILS and we'd be off for Lost Lake.
TAILS it was. Careful what you wish for! It took us four hours to reach the lake. Turns out, shorter isn't always better. While the scenery was beyond fantabulous, the hike itself was strenuous - the switchbacks weren't much of switchbacks. We seemed to be hiking straight up the mountain for most of the trek. Turns out it's an elevation gain of close to the 3,000 feet on that short 3 mile trek. Oh, and the foot bridge was washed out last year so we had to make our way across quite a fun little section of the river without it. Thanks to my dad and cousin, I made it across without falling in. Thanks to me, my dad made it across with wet feet, ankles and calves having to take one for the team in order to keep me dry.
Had we hiked to Minam Lake, we could have made that hike in less time despite the distance because the elevation gain is half that of Lost Lake. The trail is not as steep. There are many beautiful meadows to traipse through along the route and the views are equally as breathtaking. Lesson learned - shorter is not always better.
THE BRIDGE THAT WAS OUT
OUR NEW PATH ACROSS
I think this is true of our writing as well. I'm a plotter. I start out with an indepth outline that includes dialogue snippets or chunks for each chapter. When I stay true to my style, I can finish a 300+ page book fairly quickly and it will turn out decent.
However, if I stray from my path and choose to jump in early because it seems like the shorter route, I end up creating more work for myself in the long run. The road is much, much steeper. The rewrites are endless. I have to put together an outline just to map my way through all the brush. I can run out of steam, have to take many breaks, sometimes get lost.
Shorter isn't always better and shortcuts can lead to extra hours. I thought of this many times as I crawled up the side of that mountain, over the saddle and into the valley that hid that beautiful lake! I suppose as long as we get there in the end, it doesn't matter which path we choose. Ultimately, we have to find what works best for us - the long, steady path or the shorter one that can take more time.
I am an Humane Education teacher & writer living in Burbank, California. I left television production almost a decade ago to pursue my passion - animals. Along the way, I snagged myself a super handsome, extremely patient and very supportive husband. We rescued three cats - Ol' One Eye Pip, Eowyn the Snow Leopard and Wednesday the Butt. We also ended up with an American Staffordshire Terrier pup, Lily. I co-founded my own non-profit (Paws and Learn Humane Education Center) and spend three days a week in the schools educating kids about kindess to animals, dog bite prevention, city wildlife, pet overpopulation and responsible pet ownership. I love my job, but I also love to write. I spend my spare time writing and daydreaming. I love the outdoors and enjoy hikes with my hubby, friends and our dogs! Life is what we make of it and I am making the most of mine.