We got out for another evening hike up Kootenai tonight. Kind of the usual going in. Another squirrel photo, but I love the sunshine on him with the green background.
And another spectacular view of the sun setting ahead of us on the trail as we continued hiking farther in. Par for the course so far. Then we came across another hiker on his way out, who asked us how far we were going. He then told us he had seen a billy goat (male mountain goat) near the wilderness boundary. I hadn't originally intended on getting that far in our time frame (planning to be out by dark to avoid the need for headlamps), but decided for the chance of seeing the mountain goat (and getting a couple photos), we would pick up our pace and then trail run part of the way out to still get back out by last light at 9:17. So the quest was on. We got to the wilderness boundary, but never saw the mountain goat. Oh well, it was worth a shot.
It was growing darker as we were coming out quickly, and things darted off the trail here and there to avoid getting stepped on. When I leapt over a little dark lump in the trail without even thinking about what it was (there are lots of obstacles all along the way), it suddenly moved in an unfamiliar way beneath my airborne feet. I stopped and looked back to see what it was and to my surprise it was still on the trail. Yes, it's a bat! It had had its wings closed in, and then suddenly sprung them open as I jumped over it, but it didn't leave the trail. Jamie thought maybe it was a little stunned after hitting something?? Don't know. I snapped a quick pic (using flash due to the darkness), and then kept moving. We hit the trailhead at last light, after having bats swooping at us the rest of the way out. One went right between me and Emily, and another between Emily and Jamie. So crazy!! They definitely kept us moving! LOL!
Time in the mountains is always some kind of an adventure for us! :)
--Nikki / Out Here
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Let me help you get "out here", too. I will soon be offering a hiking related fitness group with coaching and support for getting in shape and getting out in the outdoors more. Stay tuned. :)