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[pct-l] The ants go marching 2 by 2...
> I prefer a tent, but I am antsy about ants and other things that
> crawl. In the desert, there were plenty of crawlers.
Whoa, until you said "ants", I had forgotten all about them. My experience
with ants on the PCT was bested only by those with bears and mosquitos. When I
did the section from Weldon to Mammoth Lakes in 1975, of the 18 days it took, I
was in snow all but 1 (the first day out of Weldon). About halfway thru this
section, we had wised up enough to take our breaks on south-facing ridges when
possible for there would be small areas freshly melted out of the snow to just
lay back in the sun and snack and water. Ideally, there was a log to sit on.
It quickly became apparent that such sites were infested with large ants, which
were also excited to be out of the snow, and they would quickly swarm out over
us, fully intending to carry us away (not bad if I could get them to carry that
damned pack to Canada for me but you know how ants are). I was usually wearing
shorts by this time of the day and these ants had no manners at all: they would
crawl inside to wear my, well, you know, my manly parts are, and proceed to
torture me as I fled as quickly as I could across the snow, another rest stop
ruined. They were so quick and vicious once that we were not seated a minute
before we hastily packed and ran for the snow. Be warned: by now, many ant
generations later, they are probably used to a regular supply of fresh meat
come spring. My advice is to let those fast hikers pass you by; you'll know
you did the right thing when you find their bones along the trail.
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