R. and I hike toward the hidden waterfall. Some places we can walk along on clear trail; others we navigate ice and deep snow. I'm wearing shorts, but at one point we are caught in a passing snow shower.
This is spring in the mountains. Some people around here don't like it. And at first glance, it's easy to see why. Snow sports are pretty much over with, but most summer ones are difficult or impossible. Bears are coming out of hibernation, hungry and irritable. Almost worse, ticks lurk on the bushes.
But there are some advantages to the season. Hiking in shorts, for one. The majority of the tourists have not yet arrived to create traffic and fill the trailhead parking lots. Soon flowers will appear. Spring means access to high trails and peaks is around the corner. Spring is a promise.
So I'll put up with muddy running routes, snow patches we have to posthole through, and unsettled weather, because it means summer is coming, with its soft air and long days. Welcome, spring! I'm glad you're here.