Clifton Nelms

Dear Editor,

I would like to thank Heidi Bunch for the article which she wrote (week of Feb. 25) concerning my attempt to walk the first 700 miles of the Pacific Rim Trail. Although the endeavor was not successful, it served as a great learning tool for understanding human nature and realizing that not all dreams fail for a lack of desire or proper planning, some are doomed because of “father time”. Let’s just say that I found out that I could not cover the mileage now that I was able to cover thirty or even twenty years ago.

However, on the positive side I met some interesting people during my short trek. On the first day I met up with Rick and Debra from Florida. He wanted to become an Air Force jet pilot, which he did and she wanted to do some long hikes and as he said “here we are”.

Later, after some misdirection on my part, I found myself trespassing on some ranch land, heard some dogs barking and headed toward the noise. It was there that I met the foreman, Martin, a no-nonsense kind of guy of about fifty years of age, who was the overseer of the ranch and the caretaker for several more in the area. After downing two tall glasses of ice cold water, we began to converse and I found out from him that he had been born on the land and that both his father and grandfather had worked all their lives at this same ranch and now his son was also working there. Amazing, four generations of cowboys at the same ranch for all those years.

And then there was John who worked at the Mt. Laguna General Store and Lodges. He was a dispenser of much humor and lots of useful information. I could well imagine that even in the worse of times he could put a smile on just about anyone’s face. So, there we have it. The misadventure that nevertheless had some very bright moments.

Clifton Nelms