Trail Running is for Mountain Goats & People Who Don’t Like Ankles

Sometime in 2008:

What coordinated people do

when inspired by

and what happens when Kristi tries.

This awesome thing happened to me on this tiny bump we call A Mountain (like A for ASU) near, well…ASU. I regularly made the 30-45 minute hike up to the top, and on this particular day I was feeling feisty and wanted extra exercise. The hike down always feels like a waste of time. So I tried to run. I didn’t make it very far at all before I twisted the shit out of my ankle. I fell down like I’d been shot. Holy hell it hurt.

I decided to just stay put. This is a busy trail and there are always students and athletes hiking. I would just wait for a handsome football player to come to my rescue. But nobody came. Nobody! I don’t know how long I waited. I’m pretty impatient so maybe like 30 minutes. This section of trail had a hand rail, so I was able to use that to hop myself down. The next part of the trail was paved asphalt (this is a serious wilderness hike, obviously) and I think I just crawled on my hands and knees for a little bit until I came to the dirt trail section. No handrail here. I could see down the trail and there was nobody coming up to save me, so somehow I managed to limp down the rest of the way. I have no idea how I put weight on that foot. Maybe that whole adrenaline thing. I was limping bad though, and as I neared the intersection of the trail and the street, a woman hiked by me. I thought about asking for help, but I’d gone so far already that I didn’t. I was also afraid I’d throw up if I tried to talk. She nodded at me, then looked down at my foot to see why I was limping. I’m assuming she saw the ballooned-out cankle, but she just looked away and carried on with her hike. I didn’t give a shit then, but going over it in my head I’m pretty appalled at the human race. What went through her head when she saw my ankle, my limp, and decided to pretend she hadn’t?

Anyways, screw her, I made it down. I didn’t go to the doctor for a couple days, just borrowed some crutches and iced it a lot. When I did go to make sure there wasn’t a break, doc said it was about as severely sprained as I could have managed, with ripped tendons and what-not. I most likely did extra damage by hiking down on my own. I really had no choice though. I didn’t have my phone. I don’t even think I had a water bottle. It turned out alright, because I was able to limp down in about an hour. But now that I do crazy hikes and canyoneering, I think back to this situation and wonder what I would do if I had 6 hours of hiking ahead of me? Or worse, scrambling? What if I actually broke my ankle and couldn’t walk at all? It’s a little scary.

I ended up in a plaster cast for 6 weeks because this monster wouldn’t heal. I chose a pink cast.





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