Cancel or not Cancel – that is the question

Can someone who no longer punches a clock have a snow day?

ATL and AVL Camino hikers on warmer days

Oh yes, they can. Friday, the snow started early but I didn’t pay attention. I went to my usual 7:30am yoga class at the YMCA. It was busy. Then it started to really snow. In Asheville, it meant that the world was going to close down.

I spent the morning printing some pictures of my Camino del Norte pilgrimage – finally – something I’ve been postponing for a long while.

I baked cookies, a classic on a snow day. I went on a short walk in the afternoon when West Asheville came alive.

But mostly I worried.

Should I cancel the hike that I was leading on Sunday? I was scheduled to lead our 16-mile Asheville Camino walk around the city, jointly with Carolina Mountain Club. Some CMC members have been waiting months to walk this Camino.

Walnut tree on AVL Camino

In many years of leading hikes, both in the Northeast and in Western North Carolina, I have never canceled a hike. There have been instances when I should have canceled – when I showed up at the meeting point and no one else did. But the record stands ; I’ve never canceled a hike.

It snowed all night and into this morning. I checked the weather forecast obsessively for Sunday (tomorrow). It didn’t change. It was going to be way below freezing until the afternoon. Roads in the Smokies were closing because of snow and ice.

I walked around the neighborhood again and noted that the snow was melting. The ice was soft but it was going to refreeze overnight. Not good.

CMC has devised the “breaking news’ feature on their website, so that a leader can let hikers know something new about the hike or cancel a hike. Some say  that it becomes too easy to cancel without the inconvenience of going to the meeting point. But it also saves hikers a trip just to find out that the hike is canceled.

I could have postponed the decision until tonight but what was the point? I canceled the hike this afternoon.

I’ve broken a long streak of not canceling hikes. I used to say that “I never cancel a hike.”

Never say never.

2 thoughts on “Cancel or not Cancel – that is the question

  1. Danny, Are you going to reschedule the hike? It sounds awesome. I would love to join you if the date works with my schedule. Please let me know. Thanks.

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