Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Hiccup: Held Up and Holed Up in Lander, Wyoming

A watercolor thank you card for Alice
When we left off from our last post, we were getting back on the trail from South Pass, near Lander, WY. Unfortunately, when we got started Forrest wasn't feeling well, and as we hiked the first seven miles his condition escalated. His heart was racing, he was overheating, and he was nauseous. At one point, I looked over at him and he was stumbling along with his eyes closed. By that time, it became quite apparent that we needed to turn around. We hitched a ride back to Lander, and after a visit to a doctor and the hospital he was diagnosed with severe heat exhaustion. His symptoms had been building for a couple of weeks, so his recovery time was going to be lengthy.

We have been back in Lander for almost two weeks now, and Forrest has finally started to feel better. Incredibly, we have family friends here who have given us wonderful company, a place to stay, and food to eat. We could not ask for a better situation during this rough patch.

Forrest on top of Bridger Peak, just past the WY state line
In the Mt. Zirkel Wilderness
The generosity of our family and friends during this time has been remarkable. We have received care packages from our people in Flagstaff (thank you to Addie, Annie, Chloe, Jacque, Tati, and our parents), and hospitality from Alice, Aileen, and Amber. We cannot thank all of you enough for your support.

Needless to say, it has been difficult to be thrown so far off course. For a moment we were not sure that we were going to be able to continue on. We are now far behind our original schedule, and we have deemed ourselves the NOBO Sweep Team. I have experienced some times of great disappointment while waiting for Forrest to get better, but I keep going back to the first piece of advice we were given about this journey: be flexible.

Thankfully, we will be getting back on the trail within the next couple of days. Our good friend Addie will be joining us for this next section, and we cannot wait to visit with her. We are looking forward to finally going through the Winds, and sleeping outside once more. This next section will be taken one step at a time, with hope that Forrest will continue to feel strong.

Next stop, Brooks Lake Lodge.
-Track & Field

Forrest and I as we crossed the Wyoming/Colorado state line


  1. Well I hope that Forrest is feeling better. As one who has experienced heat exhaustion, be prepared that your body will never react the same to heat again. I used to play tennis in 120 degrees with no issues. After I got heat exhaustion, 90 degree weather bothers me.

    Hope the rest of the trip goes well. Good luck.

  2. Hope that you feel better and stay safe on the trail. Hopefully the gentler slopes and cooler temps ahead will have you hiking strong. Stay hydrated. Hang in there.Happy Trails

  3. From all of us at Benefit safe, both of you!! We can't wait to hear the rest of your journey!

  4. best wishes that you two have gotten back on trail.