An offer you don’t refuse

“Horses you say?” I shouted into my crackling cell phone.

“Yeah, and mules. About five miles in,” came the staticy reply.

“In the Wilderness.”

“Where the hell else would we want to go? Plus, that’s where the elk are.”

I had six days worth of deadlines jockying for position in my three day week. The arithmetic of another day away from the desk just didn’t add-up. But math was never my strong suit. And I know an offer you can’t refuse when I hear it.

“Daytrip or making camp?”

“I was planning on a long day, but am up for sleeping out if you want.”

“No, daytrip is perfect. I should tell you, though, I’m not much of a hand with stock.”

“Can you stay in the saddle?”

“Usually.”

“Good enough. So you comin’?”

An invitation to the personal backcountry honeyhole of a retired habitat biologist (and generally great guy to spend a day in the woods with), complete with the horsepower to get you in, and the meat out… well, that qualifies as just such an offer. Kidney transplant, drinks with Bruce Springsteen, presentation to the United States Senate — whatever else you have on the docket can stand a little shuffling, or be accomplished in the hours you’d budgeted for sleeping.

“Does a bear shit in the woods!?”

“Let’s go find out.”

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