Inexplicably, I’m drawn to the terrain in Kit Carson Country, which is about a hour southwest of Carson City across the state line in California. So, I chose to explore Thunder Mountain on the edge of the backcountry. The trail is 8.4 miles round trip, i.e. out and back, with 1775 feet of elevation gain. It begins in a quiet forest and then ascends above the fir and pine trees to a long ridge that leads to an exposed summit of rough volcanic rock high above Silver Lake (White 2016). I’ve never seen so many butterflies and grasshoppers. They swirled around the patches of wildflowers outside of the wooded areas. There were very few people on the trail that afternoon and I had the summit all to myself where I took in the vast expanse while resting for several minutes. Solo hikes give me time to think, to process life experiences of all kinds and contemplate ideas about future projects. I appreciate the opportunity to be all alone for hours while surrounded by incredible natural beauty that will not be taken for granted.
White, M. (2016). Tahoe-Reno: 201 spectacular outings in the Lake Tahoe region, Second Edition. Birmingham, AL: Wilderness Press