Saturday, March 2, 2024

A sally to Zoar Valley?

Remember my hiking challenge? My hiking partner, Barbara, and I are reaching the end of our trail.

We have only one hike to go!

You had to complete eight hikes before St. Joseph's Day, March 19. The hiking patriarch did not state it as St. Joseph's Day however that is how I can remember it. It makes sense because St. Joseph is the patron saint of Buffalo.

St. Joseph, pray for us!

We are trying to figure out what hike to do to conclude our saga. The search has narrowed somewhat because, not being dummies, we tend to reject hikes labeled "difficult" or, God forbid, "strenuous." That eliminates Emery Park, no matter how many picnics I have gone on there, and Boutwell Forest, wherever that is.

However we want to end our hiking adventure in a blaze of glory and so we are zeroing in on Zoar Valley.

Zoar like an eagle as we say! Barbara even texted me the icon of an eagle.

That is not Zoar Valley pictured above. That is just Hoyt Lake in Delaware Park, a photo I took yesterday. I needed a picture of God's country, though, and it did the trick. 

The Zoar hike is labeled "difficult" -- however we have it on good authority that the trails are clearly marked. As they darned well should be. A couple of steps in the wrong direction, and you could be in trouble.

Clearly marked trails are rare and wonderful. Deciphering the maps has been the toughest part of this hiking adventure. I will report how it goes. It will certainly be an exalted finish for an adventure that began humbly with Tifft Nature Preserve, which both of us hiked in sneakers.

This will be a good challenge to face tomorrow. However it will not be the greatest challenge of the day! That honor belongs to Orlando Gibbons, the English Renaissance composer. I have to sing Gibbons' "Almighty and Everlasting God" with the St. Louis Choir at the 11 a.m. Mass. The choir has sung it before however I have not and so I have been cramming. 

"Stretch forth Thy right hand -- Thy right hand --" That is me! Over and over.

Two challenges, awaiting me tomorrow.

Challenges accepted!

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