Who would have thought at the young age of 60 I would swap my Saturday shopping sandals for laced-up hiking boots, and my Victoria Secret camisole for thermals with multi layers of old T-shirts on top! I reluctantly left off the career-day makeup, put on an old baseball hat with my Miss Clairol darkened ponytail hanging out, packed a tuna sandwich lunch, and off my husband and I went.
The city’s spring sun was shinning and the yard was blossoming with crocus and daffodils as we loaded Ruffus, our new previously owned ATV, onto our recently purchased BUBBA trailer. I was keyed up about this maiden ride in
a few miles south of Heber, . A frown of disgust furrowed my excited eyes
when I noticed, as we pulled away, dandelions popping through the grass. Utah
Daniel’s Canyon delighted us with snowcapped mountains and dry asphalt (my perfect traveling conditions) as we drove to our destination. The sun filtered through the windows, I peeled off some heavy layers. Wondered if we had been too cautious, but was soon lost in conversation about the wonders of budding nature that passed by. It wasn’t until we stopped at a convenience store to get a travel-traditional Salted Nut Roll; that I knew from the blast of brisk air that all of my clothes were truly needed. We picked up an ATV Trail map at the Ranger Station next door, pulled all of the straps tight, that steadied Ruffus, and continued on our way.
The calm of travel suddenly became an adventure while trying to find a flat spot in the ‘parking zone’ to unload Ruffus. Once that was accomplished and all was securely locked up, it was a gloved high-five, pull on the helmet, and climb aboard. My trepidation of riding double soon waned when I was able to snuggle and hear joyful comments or get a pat on the leg with a pointing finger that talked many words.
This City girl was enthralled with the small rivers of water that thawed beneath the snow lined trail. Our helmets clinked as I twisted my head quickly from side to side so not to miss a single view. As the trial climbed steeper and steeper the side hills did too, exposing now and then waterfalls from melting snow. A deep breath brought to my nostrils the true smells of spring.
Purple tipped ground cover lay at the base of wind wisped trees, and newly born aspen leaves flapped together like magical cymbals. Other flowers of yellow and white made a flowing carpet for the forest floor. Then the trail abruptly ended with a crusted mound of solid snow. We couldn’t complete the loop.
My euphoria stayed as high as the trail had climbed while we traveled down and planned our return ride. Then I spied a dandelion at the edge of the trail, and immediately knew that dandelions in the mountains are beautiful, but in the city, a nuisance.