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Hiking Jones Run This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

The air was warm and humid, a physical presence that weighed down on me as soon as I stepped out of the car. I was already sweaty from the previous two outings, short as they were. I opened the second door and grabbed my little hiking backpack, still proud that I, of all people, was prepared. “Now, if this one is too tough, we’ll have to turn back,” my mom said as I put the backpack on and buckled the waist belt. “That’s fine,” I replied cheerfully. This was the last hike of the day, only 3.6 miles round trip, and I was going to try to coax my mom, not a huge fan of hiking, to go the whole trail. We walked up to the big sign with the trail’s details and history. “Doesn’t look too hard, and it’s supposed to have a waterfall. Let’s go!” I said, starting on the trail.

At first, it wasn’t very difficult. A bit downhill, but definitely manageable. Unfortunately, the easy going didn’t last long. The trail began to slope sharply downward, forcing me to find footing on roots and rocks. At the end of the steepest part, the trail turned parallel to its higher counterpart, continuing downwards. The going became much more manageable, though I was beginning to lose my enthusiasm as we got further. The scenery was wonderful to take in, though, the trees green and bright, the birds chatting amongst themselves. It was very secluded and peaceful, although the sweat running down my face made it a bit less enjoyable.

“We’ll have to turn back soon,” my mom said behind me. I couldn’t blame her. She had recently gotten over an issue with her foot, and was afraid of causing the pain to flare up again. No sooner had she uttered those words, I heard the gentle sound of water. “Shh!” I told her. We listened carefully, and sure enough, the sound of cascading water came from the trail ahead. In a few moments, we came upon the source of the sound. It was the head of the waterfall that was supposed to be on the trail, a small stream winding through large rocks. By now, both of us were exhausted. My mom hadn’t hiked in years, and this was only my fourth hike, the first having happened only the day before. We both agreed that the head of the waterfall was all we would see on this trip, and began the trek back to the car. The trip back was, without question, much more difficult than on the way to the head of the waterfall. Once we reached the steep section of the trail, we had to take a few breaks. It was tough going, and we were both pouring sweat. I found the best way to get up the trail was to keep my momentum and push off the same roots and rocks that kept me from sliding down before.

Finally, we made it to the beginning of the trail. We cheered, proud of our accomplishment, however small. Once back in the car, we began talking about how we would plan for the next trip.




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