I hiked 28.9 miles through the Marble Mountain Wilderness today, crossing endless, long, high ridgelines covered in wildflowers and lots of bear poop.
Perhaps the weirdest moment of the day was when a loose flock of people and animals materialized from the woods onto the trail right in front of me, coalescing into two men, a woman, two tiny children, two dogs, and 14 goats. They were all covered head to toe in dirt, wearing rags, and obviously hadn’t seen civilization in quite a while. One of the guys explained that they were spending the summer in the forest, gathering wild food where possible, and drinking a lot of goat milk; he carried a rifle, mostly to protect the goats since a mountain lion got one of them last year; and was eager to ask today’s date. Interesting folks.