The lone hiker reached the clearing, slung off his backpack, loosened his boot laces, then stretched his aching muscles. He’d been hiking the trail since breakfast and was in need of a short rest. After he removed some lunch from his pack he sat on a nearby rock and began to eat.
It wasn’t much of a lunch, but enough. It was then that he noticed how silent nature really was, not even the chirping of a bird. Like most hikers he preferred to walk alone. In the evening all the hikers in the shelters compared notes about the day, and what was coming tomorrow.
Presently he slipped to the ground, set his mental alarm to wake him in half an hour and dozed off enjoying the warm sun. The afternoon’s section of the hike would be on even ground and the night’s shelter was only six more miles away.