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All packed up and ready to leave

All packed up and ready to leave. Piney Creek Wilderness, February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

I toyed with the idea of leaving first thing in the morning, but a bitingly cold wind put me off that idea. It was very windy in the night, the trees flexing had the hammock bouncing around a bit. The temperature dropped to 24 degrees, I wasn’t toasty, but I was warm enough.

What a well-used fire ring should look like — no left over burnt branch ends or trash. Piney Creek Wilderness, February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

The campsite has been used since I was last here in July 2023. It’s not like I own the place! However, it must have been some aspiring Bear Grylls wannabe and friend. They cut down a couple of cedar tree saplings to make a bed, left a selection of TP flowers about seven yards from the campsite, and a load of half burnt wood and some trash in the fire ring.

I cleared up the TP, and was going to break up the bed, but decided against it. If they returned and it was gone, they’d probably just cut down another couple of saplings and make another. I had a campfire on my second night and burned all the half-burned wood and tidied everything up.

Lots of people haven’t heard of or cannot be bothered with a “Leave no trace” ethic around here. I’m probably being a bit hypercritical. It’s not like I’ve removed the table and fire ring I found here and restored the place to its pristine state. And I have moved a few rocks around too. That said, I have tried to keep the place pretty much as I found it though.

I spent a lot of the morning in the hammock staying warm out of the wind. I used up the last of my fuel heating water for lunch and a cup of tea. It was far too windy for the wood burning stove. The mess left by the previous user(s) of the site had cast a bit of a pall over my visit. But today it was bright, clear and cold, and it felt more like home again. I felt sad to be going, but come two-ten, I was on my way.

Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

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