Yesterday we went for a walk at Sandy Lake. I wanted to walk to Jack Lake to see if the trail to the boardwalk there was reachable. Sadly it was not, due to accumulated snow and bent trees blocking the path.
I call it "bushwhacking"; wandering off trail through the woods to see what I can see.
The trouble with me is I'm overly confident in my sense of direction; far too confident in retrospect.
I was sure that that trail would get me out of the woods well ahead of the other hiker.
I followed the trail until it came out on a wider rather familiar looking trail. Instead of forging ahead in a direct line, I had blundered in a circle and come out on my original trail !
At this point you must be asking if I'd turned on my Geo tracker and the answer is "yes". It was the tracker that showed me I was almost back where I'd started.
So I went back into the woods. Oddly enough when I came to a cross trail I would again rely on my unerring sense of direction and not check my Geo tracker until I'd slogged down the path for ten minutes and finding I was once more going the wrong way.
At one point in the woods I found a set of tracks and happily followed them for a while before realizing that they were my own.
Being lost wouldn't have been a big deal except that darkness was falling as it does after four o'clock in winter.
My tracker showed me where I was parked so I could see the general direction of my car but I didn't want to keep stopping to check the tracker as light was fading and my worry was rising. I would think I saw a path ahead only to find it was a stream cutting across the woods. I was entirely off trail and in deep woods.
I could relate to the irrational feeling of panic that causes lost people to make poor decisions.
Ultimately I reached my car at five o'clock. I'd been walking for three hours and we'd covered five km.
Like I said, I'm an arse !