Thursday, October 5, 2017

A good lost and a bad lost.

Last week I met up with chums Ros (say "Roz") and her hubby Terry at the Noggins Corner Farm corn maze up in the valley.

This year's maze design was in honour of Canada 150.

Ros was wicked good at figuring out our route through the maze.

In fact she was so good that we didn't get lost.   So .... I felt obliged to take the map from her and just start making random turns in order to see if we could get lost and then still find our way out.

Along the way there were stations where one would read facts and perhaps do a rubbing to add to a sheet that you take through the maze.  These stations are to help educate children who come on school trips to visit the maze.  Being children at heart we joined in the learning experience.

Despite my best efforts to get us lost, Ros not only got us back on track but stopped to help a group of kids who were trying to find their way back out of the maze.

 What a fun way to pass a couple of hours with good friends.


In contrast I had a very different "lost" experience Tuesday last.

The dogs and I went for a nice pre-lunch walk at 11 am at Sandy Lake Park.  It's a marvellous off leash park (from October - June) with some wide road trails and some woodsy clear trails.  I enjoy meandering through the woods.

It was a lovely day that steadily warmed as we walked.

We followed several trails that we'd walked before.  When the trail we were on crossed a wider trail, rather than turning right onto that wider trail as I had in the past I followed the trail onto the far side and kept following it.  It was well trod and clear.  

Would it be spoiling my tale if I told you that that was a pivotal mistake and lead to my subsequent state of "lostness" ?

There were even blue ribbons on trees marking the trail.  Sadly I had made an assumption that these trails would all loop back to my starting point ... 

as you have no doubt guessed that was a very wrong assumption.

Just because a tree has a ribbon on it doesn't mean jack shit in this case.

Blissfully unaware, I walked on ... and on.   When the trail finally met a power line with a clear ATV trail I thought it was the same power line that ran near the park entrance; sadly it wasn't, but I didn't realize that until I had walked another couple of kilometres.  

Upside down and lost.

It was now too late to turn back so I kept following the trail.  

Through the later part of what was no longer a fun hike, I texted my frustrated daughter to tell her I was a mite lost.  I say "frustrated" because I've done this before, and she's warned me about being more careful.  Luckily I had my phone external charger with me and my two loyal companions who apparently were just as lost as I.

When the trail curved and I saw this power station I knew where I was and it confirmed that I had been walking away from my starting point and was several kilometres and probably a couple of hours from my car.  

I recalled that there was a bit of a cross-country trail that might shorten my walk back.  So with blind determination enhanced by a dose of panic I illogically continued on.

 I knew that this trail should lead to a big open area that I'd visited before.  However at the top it petered out and I was faced with a wall of trees.  I actually blundered forward pushing my way through trees; committing the sin of getting even more lost.  At one point I just sat down but realized that no helicopter was coming to haul me outta there and set off again.  At last I saw some higher rocks and scrambled up them to see where the eff I was.  

I had been here a few years ago and knew there was a trail leading back down to the service road beside the 102.  The trouble was I had to follow three false leads and keep doubling back before I found the correct trail.

I was glad that finally I really knew where I was.

No this isn't my car.  I wasn't gone THAT long

I just wished that it wasn't still a couple of kilometres from my car.   

The dogs would find streams to refresh themselves in when they got hot.  I hadn't brought my water and for the first time all summer I forgot my hat.

I texted Kaitlyn to let her know I was finally on track and she reminded me yet again that I needed to STOP this random exploration.

The dogs and I reached the gravel service road and after a kilometre I scanned the slopes to my right for a path that would lead up into the woods and join up with the Jack Lake Trail which would hopefully lead me back to my car. 

Happily I found it easily but had mis-remembered how far that trail went.  Somehow I thought I was almost back to the car.  I still had a ways to go.

At some point I stopped taking photos or admiring the lovely scenery.

I have no clue how far I walked but I'm guessing 10-15 km.  What began as a one hour walk turned into four hours as I arrived back at my car at 3 pm.

Sooki immediately fell asleep.  

I think I've learned my lesson.


  1. Let me just say that I'm glad I wasn't with you that day (not when you were with your friends! I'm referring to your meander with the dogs)
    Glad you made it back to civilization. I'm not sure I believe you about learning your lesson :)

    1. You know me too well Sara, but I have installed a GPS app on my phone. Now I just need to remember to turn it on when I leave my car to hike and it should lead me back to my car.

  2. How were your feet and legs the next day? Sore? Take Ros with you on your next hike, LOL!

    1. Surprisingly not sore as I do do a fair bit of walking, but I was tired. I don't think Ros would like your solution. lol

  3. Oh dear. I'm with Sookie after just reading your about your adventure. You are a brave lady to set off by yourself. At least you had your phone and the dogs to keep you company.My daughter often goes off on a hike alone, but she doesn't tell me about it until she has finished it. Like your daughter, I always tell her it is not a good idea, but that carries little weight. Glad you made it back to the car.

    1. I've loaded a GPS app onto my phone so hopefully this won't happen again. I am a slow learner for sure.

  4. Oh my goodness, Sybil! Maybe you need to stick to corn mazes for a while? So glad you had the dogs and your phone with you ~ it's been ages since I've taken a four hour walk. :)

    1. Yeah, it really did give me a scare Barbara. I've now got a GPS app on my phone and am more circumspect about biting off more than I can chew.

  5. I love the story of the maze - but am a little concerned about your meanderings and 'getting lostness' - glad you and the dogs made it safely back to your car. Seems to me you need a checklist before you set out on a 'little walk' - "Phone fully charged; GPS enabled; a full bottle of water; some snacks" (just in case you decide to follow the colourful ribbons into the woods again). ;-) Have fun, Sybil - but stay safe too!


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