When Ambrose and I were hiking to the start of the trail to Scenic Lake in the Sawtooth Wilderness, we stuck together for most of the morning. But after the second stream crossing I went on ahead of him. I was feeling warmed up and ready to go. I zoomed off, and soon reached the cairn and sign that marked the turnoff to Scenic Lake.
I decided to wait for Ambrose there. The sign was fastened to a tree, and I dumped my pack near the trunk and pulled out my birdseed bag to sit on. Then I spent some time being quiet and listening to the birds.
Then I heard voices. I didn’t think it would be Ambrose so I sat up and looked around. Two male hikers were coming down the trail from the other direction. I stayed sitting up and watched them approach.
When they were close, I said hello. The guys didn’t seem interested in talking to me. They were intent. As they walked past me, I heard, “It should be right here.”
I almost spoke up. I almost asked them if they were looking for the turnoff to Scenic, but they walked past very quickly, not turning.
If they had turned, they would have seen the sign.
When Ambrose caught up to me a few minutes later, he revealed that the guys had indeed been looking for Scenic.
How did he know this? Because they asked him.
I was highly amused by this. I was sitting practically on the junction and they didn’t have a word for me. But they run into another man and ask for directions.
Now, Ambrose contends that they may have just been tired, hungry, thirsty or in a hurry. And that’s why they didn’t ask me. I don’t know. It seemed a bit sexist to me. But it didn’t hurt me in the slightest.
It would have served them right if I were hiking alone and they’d gone all the way back to the trailhead.