In 2013, I went to West Virginia as part of my healing process and to do some early morning photography in Harper’s Ferry. Duh, of course I camped, the campground is only 5 minutes away, so it was geographically perfect for morning photography. The problem now is, at that time I didn’t have the idea of Camp50 so I slept in my sleeping bag in a cabin, I guess I was being lazy because I was heading to Sedona in two days and didn’t want to take everything out and then pack it back up again.
There lies the problem, I slept in a cabin not a tent………..
Maybe, I was just looking for an excuse to go back to Harper’s Ferry, because it’s one of my favorite places to spend time with my camera, or maybe it’s because this place holds a special meaning to me, a place I can’t find the right words to explain, in short my first visit to Harper’s Ferry is why I lost my friend Blue. So, yes it has meaning to me.
A lot of camping has happened in 2015 and it’s now clear to me that I will reach my Camp50 goal by April 2016, so I felt it was important to redo West Virginia, camp in my tent or WV would feel like unfinished business. How could I claim a 50 state solo camping trip if some of the states were not solo or weren’t in a tent.
Since I’m working on putting the past behind me, symbolic or not…. the right thing was to do was, re-do West Virginia the right way, same as all the other states………. In my tent.
This is where the Southwest Airlines voucher came into play again. No cost to fly in / fly out of BWI, just the cost of a rental car, campsite, food & gas. Dropped off Patriot for one night of boarding Saturday, took a quick 1 hour flight to Baltimore and made my way to Harper’s Ferry campground in West Virginia. Flew home early Sunday afternoon, picked up Patriot and then back home. Quick trip but, I felt so much better after I had camped it, now when April 2016 comes around I feel secure in knowing I reached my goal the right way. NO missed opportunities, an honest 50 state solo bid.
This is my WV campsite, along the Potomac River on a beautiful October weekend.
Made dinner and a campfire and enjoyed the quiet along the river, the air was crisp, it was a wonderful fall evening…………… UNTIL the train came rolling by. The campground website mentioned the sound of the train but, I didn’t realize the train would be approximately 50 feet from my campsite. When I first heard the train come by, it made me smile because it was starting to get dark and the train lights appeared out of nowhere…… It was like a ghost train on a cool crisp October evening along the Potomac. It was perfect.
It was a comforting sound until around 2:30 am when the hourly train came by and fear set it, I wondered hmm what if that train derails? I thought, it’s either going to land on me, or push me inside my tent into the Potomac River. Now, I was having a hard time falling back asleep, so I did some deep breathing meditation until I fell asleep.
Sine my flight was early, I had to get moving first thing in the morning. Being in Harper’s Ferry first thing in the morning is a very time. It’s so quiet, the light is amazing and there’s a little breakfast place the overlooks the town. It’s one of my favorite places to sit and watch the town. There’s so much history here, if you sit quietly you can almost feel it. Of course you have no idea what I’m talking about and that’s ok, someday I hope you can spend some quiet time in Harpers Ferry.
Here are a few pictures from my morning.
Thanks for reading my stories of #Camp50 it’s be an amazing healing journey and I’ve been able to see so much of this great country AMERICA.
I’ve been trying to end all my writings with a quote but, this story deserves something a little more personal.
A message to Blue: I’ve thought about you and our friendship everyday for the last four years. The amount of times I tried to get you to talk to me, the amount of times I tried to understand what really happened between us. Unanswered questions, not getting closure to losing your friendship is a hard thing to live with. We said we would always support each others decisions, I’m truly sorry I wasn’t able to support your decision at the time. Hopefully, you’ve found peace in my silence. Anyway, you will always be someone I consider to be my dearest friend. Who we were, the friendship we had, is in the past, we aren’t the same people we were then, hopefully now we are both able to find true happiness within ourselves. You helped show me so much about myself, I’m grateful to you for allowing me to open up parts of me that were closed of for so long. You were a safe place to rest when I wasn’t sure which path to take. Wishing you much happiness, you’re a good dog Blue.