[originally written in a paper journal, subsequently published on my older site. Current (2014) commentary in [italics] ]
Today was the first mostly sunny day in over a week, though there still were some clouds hanging around the tops of the mountains. I decided to go up Verstovia and hope that it was reasonably clear by the time I got up there. The trail was in much better shape then the last time I was on it (approx. four years ago). There is still a work crew doing trail work near the top. The bags of gravel that were taken up by helicopter can be seen from town near the top of the trail. I am not sure how much longer it will take for them to finish the work.
It took a little more than an hour to get up to peak 2550 and about half of that to get down. I thought about going over to the main peak, but decided against it. On the way down I passed a couple of people whom I had also passed when I was nearing the top. I got down just before them and gave them a ride back into town. They have been in town since Friday and are leaving this evening. At least one of them is from Portland.
In hindsight I feel like it would have been a good idea to at least get their names and possibly an address of some sort (e-mail or otherwise), both because it seems like it would be nifty to collect names and addresses of people I meet along the way and also because I am curious about how they will view their visit to Sitka. However, there is something to be said for the anonymous encounter, though I find it leaves me curious. This curiousity is such that it almost leads me to try to imagine who these people might be. That could be part of the appeal of anonymity, I suppose. There is also something nice about seeing people for the first time and being able to be friendly straight away, even if the short time you may spend together is the only time your paths cross in this life.
Right below my kneecaps on the outer part of my legs is sore after coming down the hill. This was also the case after my last trip up Indian River Trail. Perhaps it is from the speed with which I went down the hills (as well as insufficient time for complete recovery). I am not sure if it is muscle, tendons, joints, or something else that is the source of the soreness.