Sunday, January 14, 2007

"Dash and Rest" hikers

I hike fairly slowly but usually with a steady pace and if I need to rest often will slow down my pace. Every so often I encounter a group of hikers who walk quickly but stop often. If I am hiking in the same direction as they are, I repeatedly step off the trail to let them pass and then a few minutes later pass them as they are stopped. Of course there are many reasons other than resting to stop on a trail, to view scenery, take pictures, calls of nature, etc., and I also stop for these reasons. I'm not bothered by a group catching up to me a couple of times but after 6 or more times, I get a bit annoyed. Stepping aside every 10 to 15 minutes while the same group passes me slows me down and breaks my rhythm. I usually find that I get to the "object" of the hike about the same time as the "dash and rest" group.

When I have repeatedly stepped aside for the same group of hikers, I try to find a strategy to avoid having to do so often. Sometimes I can walk a bit faster and take shorter breaks and remain ahead of them. Other times just going a bit slower, taking more breaks works better, I stay behind them. Sometimes the group is so eratic that neither strategy works.

Obviously my annoyance at being repeatedly passed by the same group is my problem. However, I wonder that the group walking faster never seems to think it is odd (or rude) to keep passing the same hiker(s). If they are such strong hikers, why don't they stay ahead? And if they need to rest so often, maybe they are hiking faster than they can sustain.


At 31/3/07 21:48, Blogger mossymom said...

Makes me glad that I hike mostly in the Olympics where the trails are not crowded.

I had the trail all to myself today and the day before yesterday.

At 1/4/07 15:02, Blogger feralhiker said...

Much of my hiking in the WA Cascades is on less crowded trails. In parks and some other trails like the Pacific Crest Trail is where I run into these hikers.

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