A Last Little Present

The parking lot for every trailhead is full this morning. It makes me wonder if most of hikers in Juneau are linked via their phones to a fancy app. A flat, gray sky hangs over the oceans, and cuts off views of the mountain sides. Today’s high tide chokes off the trailside beaches. We do pass a small gang of sea lions but no one is stopping to watch them.

            We drive to the end of the North Douglas Highway and are happily surprised to find the parking lot for the Peterson Creek trail empty. Knowing what to expect, I slipped grippers onto the souls of my hiker boots. They made it possible to walk down a narrow, ice covered plank trail without slipping. 

            Sunshine broke through the clouds just before we reached a small beach. It lacked the power to clear the skies. But enough holes in the sky appears to deliver drama. On the way back to the car, I found a single, red-ripe cranberry still clinging to its evergreen mom. Since nobody was around to talk me out if it, I picked the little berry and swallowed it. My last Christmas present?

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