The slip was sudden, hard, and almost painful… but not really unexpected. From the moment I decided to explore a new trail to the summit I knew I’d bought a one-way ticket with no certain destination.
My muscles tensed as I forced my body to stop fighting gravity and simply flow with the forces I could not really control anyway.
I kept sliding down the loose-earth slope. All I could do was try to stay as stable and possible and hope no stones or branches hidden in the thick foliage caught my limbs.
The edge was getting nearer at that incredibly slow pace that can only be experienced with the heightened attention brought by sudden danger and the accompanying adrenaline jolt.
Suddenly my legs slipped under a thick branch. I raised my arms and hugged the unexpected anchor, hoping it wouldn’t snap under my weight… it didn’t.
I carefully untangled from my savior, only a couple of feet from the edge. Holding firmly to the nearest tree, I glanced over the edge and let out a giggle that grew into a roaring laughter.
The ground was just five feet below.
I hopped down into a nice and level trail, the view of the valley was breathtaking from here.
I had lost my reserve water bottle and there was a huge gash on my left sleeve, but other than that and a big dent in my pride, everything was ok.
I wiped the loose earth from my hands, took a long sip from my hydration backpack , and began running once again. The day was young and there were still so many miles to run and new trails to explore.