So Sunday we enjoyed breakfast and then decided to embark in our first adventure of a local favorite past time, Boonie Stomp'n! With a backpack stocked with snacks, water, a flashlight, goggles and camera, we head off to the recently discovered trail head.
Pagat Caves was our destination. The trail was pretty well marked. As I explained it to a friend from camp "If you thought coming down from the Rappel Trail with the new fence with no gate that the BGTC put up was difficult, then you should come try to follow the neon pink tree flags on Pagat Trail. I'm pretty sure I walked in circles the entire way down." Tree flags were tied everywhere to mark the trail, I would look to the right and see tape leading up that rock, Ryan would look to the left and see tape leading across a few low limbs. One might say "Emily, just walk straight." Well that falls into a cave that is too dark to see the bottom. And who in their right mind would think that I would go into a cave that I know nothing about. Come on people, there could be bats in there.
Keep in mind Guam is just a big piece of coral. With the slightest bit of moisture the algae comes out and the trails become treacherous. We gracefully slid down the muddy parts, climbed between low hanging branches, used our Spiderman skills to get up and over rocks and opted to skip out on the few incredibly scary looking caves we passed. But finally, "I hear it, oh wait, I see it... the PACIFIC OCEAN! Ryan you owe me ice cream for seeing the ocean first" (I'm still waiting on my ice cream.)
The view was beautiful. The ocean was a deep blue. The sky just above us was nothing but a gorgeous Carolina blue. In the distance there was a storm brewing. Looking down the coast line reveals no signs of civilization. The coral cliffs offered a place to explore and relax as we watched the waves crash on the rocks below. The cliffs are a favorite place to jump off into the deep pools below, but with the storm the ocean was as rough as I have ever seen. No better way to spend a Sunday than out on the coast with no one else in sight. A peaceful escape from life.
We enjoyed about half a hour out on the cliffs. I was certain that the storm out in the distance was coming towards us. Ryan assured me it was not. Only when out of no where the wind picked up to a flat out cold 45 mph did we turn around to see the other storm coming over the mountain behind us. At that point Ryan agreed we needed to head back. We made it just under the tree cover before the Heavens opened up and the rain poured down.
Needless to say we made it back safe and sound. The hike back was somewhat like trying hike up Sliding Rock. Every step we took forward we must have slid back 3. By the end, we were drenched, muddy, pretty stinky (see picture on the left) and thrilled with the completion of our first 'Boonie Stomp'.
There will be many more Boonie Stomps in our future. Some are easy enough to navigate yourself, others need to be led by a local who knows which tree to turn by, all are guaranteed to provide wonderful stories for us to share with you. Until next time, we will try not to slip down a mountain, be blown of a cliff, or end up covered in mud on our rock in the middle of the Pacific.