The Trail Expert
Some of the trails and especially the bridges on them we used were in pretty bad shape. One of my horses broke through one of these bridges. It was no big deal to us as we just went around them and through the creek. I did inform the local Forest Service ranger and he came up the next day. He was quite concerned about those bridges and said he would do something soon.
The next day he called me and said he had a trail expert from Idaho coming pronto and asked if I would meet them up on this particular trail. Now why he was bringing a trail expert in from Idaho, I have no idea. It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out these things were simply rotten and had to be replaced. Hells Bells, they were built by the CCC’s in the 1930’s. (I’ll bet you didn’t know that a lot of the trails were originally built during the Great Depression by the CCC’s). Anyway I guess that’s the way the bureaucrat works, bring in a few so called experts and have them write some reports on it and study it for awhile.
The ranger called me a couple days later and said he and the trail expert were going to hike in the next day and asked if I would meet them up there. I told him no problem but me and Joe ain’t gonna hike in and that we were gonna bring the horses up. We arranged to meet at a certain spot on the trail. Joe and I were riding up and before we got to this spot I told Joe to keep the horses here in this nice little meadow and I would walk the rest of the way to meet them, which was only a couple hundred yards around this rocky point. As I walked around the point I met up with the ranger and the trail expert. She (the trail expert) said with a smirk on her face, “I thought you were coming up here with horses”. I introduced myself and said we did and they were just down around that point. She just looked at me with that same smirk on her face as if to say, don’t bs me, I’m the trail expert. At that point I turned around and hollered to Joe to ride up here. In a minute or so there came Joe riding his horse and leading mine. All the trail expert kept repeating was that’s phenominal, that’s phenominal and Joe politely said, Maam you didn’t expect me to walk up here did you? After she described how she would advise tearing out the rotten bridge and rebuilding it with some nearby dead standing trees (why didn’t we think of that) they hiked down the trail. Joe looked at me as he was leaning on his saddle horn, tipped his hat back and said, pard that’s the biggest word I have ever heard, what’s it mean? I replied, I think it means she likes you and wants your phone number.