Wallace Falls · 28 July 2013

I had to see Wallace Falls. So we packed up the kids and headed out on a great adventure in our own backyard.

My wife, The Mindboggling Mrs. Miyoshi, asked me several times why we had to go to Wallace Falls. I really had no reason. I suppose it could have been that after our vacation on the cruise ship, I just wanted to get out of the house. I was antsy for another little adventure. And Wallace Falls State Park is close. So we went.

As we walked up the trail, The Mindboggling Mrs. Miyoshi asked me again why I wanted to see the falls. And again. And again. She was wondering because it was quite the hike. And it was really not that scenic. Not if you wanted to stay on your feet. We had to watch where our feet were placed so that we did not fall down on the trail because it was treacherous in places. Rocks and roots were plentiful. Even though the trails were good.

We were prepared for the hike. We had good shoes, a packed lunch, and plenty of water. But none of us was ready for the elevation gain. Except for Thing 2. Apparently, he is part mountain goat. He just bounded up and down the trails all the way to the top and all the way back to the bottom. But besides Thing 2, we were all wondering when we were going to get there. Thing 3 and The Mindboggling Mrs. Miyoshi kept wondering aloud why we came in the first place.

Thankfully, it was scenically beautiful when we finally reached the lower falls.

I thought we had accomplished our goal. I thought we had reached the top. But the map showed that we were still almost a mile away (we had already come almost three) and that we still had just under half of the 1500-foot elevation gain to go. With that news, my wife and our youngest son decided that they were ready to head back. Thing 2 was raring to go though, so we split up. The Mindboggling Mrs. Miyoshi and Thing 3 went back via an easier albeit longer trail, while Thing 2 and I continued to the top.

Now, Wallace Falls has three distinct sections. There is the lower falls, the middle falls, and the upper falls. We all made it to the lower falls. Thing 2 and I thought that we had reached the upper falls when we got to the middle section. In fact, we went partway up to the upper falls, decided that we had gone far enough, then started back down. But after talking to others who had gone all the way up, we decided that we could not miss the top. In Thing 2’s own words, we had to go to the top “just to tell Mom we did.” So we turned around and went all the way to the upper falls.

I must say that the top was a bit anticlimactic. The middle and lower falls were more spectacular. However, we had accomplished our goal. At least we could tell the mother that we made it to the top. And it was a good thing, because I doubt we will ever go back. At least not with The Mindboggling Mrs. Miyoshi in tow.

Looking back on the outing, I know it was worthwhile. The elevation gain was painful, especially for my wife, but it was still a nice trip. After all, we were together out in the woods enjoying God’s beauty.

And we accomplished a goal that I did not know we had.

Back when Thing 1 was still not a teenager and Thing 2 and Thing 3 were very young, we had gone to Wallace Falls State Park. We wanted to get the kids outside and enjoying nature and like I said, it is not very far from our home. Thing 1 was our mountain goat then and full of energy, but we never got past the flat part. We never even really got to the trails leading up to the falls. It was probably a good thing. I am sure I would have been pulling or carrying three people up the mountainside. Which is what I saw plenty of other folks with young people doing on our trip up to the falls. But unlike the folks we saw at the lower falls and various points on the trail, we turned back before we even really got started. We never saw any of the falls on that first trip.

I am not sure we will all go to Wallace Falls as a family outing again, but I would like to take our oldest son there one time. After all, when he was young, he was ready to climb. He was raring to go. And now, maybe he wants to accomplish a goal he did not know we had before.

When we went to Wallace Falls, I had no idea why we had to go. I just wanted to go. Now, I realize I had unfinished business. A thwarted effort many years ago had stuck in my craw. That was why I had to pack up the family for an adventure close to home. That was why I had to see Wallace Falls.

© 2013 Michael T. Miyoshi

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