Camper, West Coast Trail Dreams fever the damp night. In one, Rachel Carson reminds me of the conventional wisdom: never attempt Owen's Point the route's highest evacuation point on a rising tide. I wake, convinced to go inland.
I am alone in this resolve. My friends want to race the ocean.
So I trudge into the blowdowns alone. And man, does it suck. For two hours, I tag along with some Canadian women, until they start surfing the seaside algae. I watch a few pratfalls, then mouse inward again.
Footfalls echo behind me.
They pad forward.
"Bearcougarthing go away!" I yell with more verve than I feel.
"Ninety-nine bottles of beer on the wall. NINETY-NINE BOTTLES OF BEEEEEER!"