We slept in until 5, then took the boys to watch the sunrise over Lake Tahoe.
It was our final day.
We took photos of the boys climbing around on rocks and playing, just as goats. Not goats with a job to do or a long day ahead. Just goats being goats.
They’ve developed from barnyard animals into Wild Beasts of the Forest. They are wary and attentive to their surroundings. They’ve taken on roles in their herd. They’ve bonded and become family. It’s been fascinating to watch their development over the last month. So quickly they’ve been better around dogs, learned to give bicycles wide berth, posed for cameras. Sharkey started his own trick of giving kisses during selfies, and it’s been a big hit. He could start his own kissing booth if he had better breath. They alert us to hikers long before we can see or hear them.
They stare into Other Dimensions and Speak with the Ancestors – the way cats do. Suddenly looking far away into nothing for extra periods of time. Until I’m a little uncomfortable. But nothing is there.
Hikers congratulated us as we hiked down to the parking lot. To our knowledge, we are the very first team to ever complete the Tahoe Rim Trail with pack goats. History.
We found a shady spot just above the parking lot to change into fresh clothes, give ourselves a wet wipe bath, and wait for the arrival of our families so we could make a grand exit from the wilderness while they were there.
And then they were.
And we walked down the Last Bit of Trail and into view of their video and their cheering and their arms and we knew that we were home. And our husbands gave us flowers and told us they were proud of us.
And the Goateo was over.