Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Bait Hole

I have long enjoyed winter activities, whether playing as a child or with a child making forts or snowmen, or going skating, snow shoeing, and cross-country skiing. I tried downhill skiing as a teen but it was not truly to my liking. I didn’t like the speed. I’ve long been better taking a slower pace.

As vacation drew near, my husband and I longed to return to the Bait Hole. A scenic series of woodsy cross-country trails in the shadows of Mount Katahdin, I’ve gone cross-country skiing at this spot in our hometown for many years with various friends and family members. My husband and I have frequented this skiing spot since our dating days in the 80’s, but it had been several seasons since our last jaunt there. So, knowing we’d be making a trip north to catch our daughter’s college play, we made plans to travel a bit farther so as to visit with my parents for a few days and to take our family back to the Bait Hole.

We rented five pairs of skis, boots, and poles at a local business. We headed out late morning, arriving at the Bait Hole within minutes, and helped the kids strap on their equipment. And then we were off ! It felt great to be back on the trails. It came back to us all quite quickly and, new to the sport, Noemi did well too.

But the trail conditions were not ideal. Icy from the week’s earlier freezing rain, the tracks were a bit slick. Still, we did fine despite the challenge of the slick spots. Well, that is until we approached the hills. As I went down one of the steeper hills, I tried hard to keep my nerves in check, but either out of fear or due to a loss of balance, I found myself falling back...and onto my backside. The next hill would bring the same result. I started to realize that I would be quite sore by nightfall. The kids and my husband each took their own spills on the trails, but not surprisingly, we all managed to have a good time anyway.

As I pop a few motrin tonight, I anticipate feeling some aches and pains tomorrow morning. Still, I am happy to have returned to our sentimental skiing venue. The months and years go by so quickly the older I get; the hills of life seem steeper, and as I fly down the other side I continue to work hard to keep my fears in check and my life balanced. I’ll continue to take some spills as we all will, and I’m sure to get bruised from time to time. But taking time to get back to the Bait Hole helps me remember the importance of moving at a slower pace when possible so as to fully appreciate the trails or the trials of those I love.

1 comment:

  1. I remember our cross-country excursions at the Bait Hole. I think my favorite part was stopping in the woods for a hot chocolate break.