The Third Hitch: The Herm Saga


And so it was unanimous, that I, Matty “BoyIce” Herman, would take hold the reins of the powerful and handsome Pacific Crest Trail crew as we continued on our quest with dreams of achieving greatness in the world and ourselves. My leadership style was similar to the influential lyrics written by the late and great Canadian-American singer, songwriter and self proclaimed “bitch” Alanis Morissette. They go along the lines of, “I’ve got one hand in my pocket, and the other one is giving the PEACE sign.” If only peace were so easy to achieve, jeez.
The first morning, we ventured off in our big ol’ Ram 2500 super-truck to the Rainbow Falls trailhead, where we would begin our six mile hike to our beloved backwoods campground along side Deer Creek. The hike went well, and as soon as we got there we divided up the tasks at hand, setting up our base camp quicker than a kitty can go from feelings of indifference to totally loving to indifference once more. Tents were set up on flat ground and were clear from the plethora of tent crushing, human squashing snags. Ryan taught me how to tie more than my go-to slipknots (even though they’re totally the awesome, no matter what anyone says) to set up our kitchen area, which now includes a bug net; mosquitoes are little punks and make us want to kick, scream and ball our pretty eyes out when were trying to cook food.
Finally, we got out there to do what we know and love, crosscut anything that stands in our way! For the first three days, we worked south from Deer Creek while the Forest Service worked north from Duck Creek. Day one we had two cutting teams, but realizing that’s not the fastest way to go, the next few days we broke up into a two person branch removing and debarking team and a three member saw team. We covered ground quickly and the views were surreal to say the least. We met up with the Forest Service team, Clancy, Jess and Katie, quicker than we could have imagined. However, we still had two more days on hitch, so we backtracked and did some magnificent maintenance on the trail. One day, team Matt and Desi (aka Leelee) (aka Ashley) and team Dan and I built two wood retaining walls where significantly large fallen root balls had left craters where the trail had once been. Hate to sing my own praises (alright that’s a total lie), but these repaired sections of trail looked more fine than when the sun declines over the sweet Sierra skyline. The last day was no ones’ favorite. For 9 hours, we removed rocks from the trail, a lot of rocks, a lot of big rocks.. I guess when you complete all of your work for a hitch early you have to do SOMETHING to keep busy. Regardless, our gang of trail angels is not a force to be reckoned with; we’re basically the baddest thing to hit the West Coast since the death of Tupac, RIP Macaveli.
Yes we are phenomenal workers, but as I stated earlier, peace was my goal. We were having troubles earlier on in the hitch, but nevertheless, I think a little motivation, a strengthened sense of community and the accomplished feeling we all got when we saw the products of our labor come together brought us closer and further solidified our teams’ relationship. Love you, Ryan, Matt, Dan and Ashley. Fun at all costs, BoyIce out.