Friday, October 1, 2010

Carr Peak Bike-Hike

Up ahead on the trail, I heard someone curse sharply. Other voices responded with something unintelligible but sympathetic sounding. I rounded a bend and caught sight of them: a half-dozen Forest Service workers outfitted for trail maintenance standing in two groups about a hundred feet apart. One of the nearer group, a young woman, saw me coming, and said, "I'm so sorry." I made a questioning face. "I accidentally broke their nest and the bees are all stirred up. You might want to run past them." She glanced toward the more distant group, who were rubbing and scratching.

I saw the bees flying fast, tight orbits around their nest a couple of feet off the trail. They looked stirred up alright, but not very numerous or menacing. "I'm not allergic to bees, so I'll try to sneak past," I said. And so I tried. The bugs left me alone until I drew up even with their damaged home, then attacked en masse. One made a direct assault on my nose, seemingly intending to crawl up a nostril, while others stung my nearside arm and back. I had time to mutter "Crap!" before pawing at the nose invader and taking off running. I tore the bee-booger away from my face, only to have another replace him, and sting my nose in the bargain.

About the time I barreled into the midst of the second group, the bees broke off their attack.

I continued up to Carr Peak to inspect the Geocache (A-OK!) and have a snack before heading down. I had ridden the mountain bike from home up to the Ramsey Vista campsite, where I'd locked it to a tree. I'll add the trip stats later.

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