This is first time something like this has happened, over many years and many, many mountains. I have wondered when my time would come. I always tell my kids that it doesn't matter what kind of shape you are in as anyone can bust an ankle.
My first aid-trained 16-year old son, Ben, rose to the occasion. He wrapped up my leg and carried both his pack (on his back) and my Osprey one (on his front), to lighten my load. He kept checking my eyes for shock. He gave me ibuprofen. My other son stepped it up, too. I am so glad it was me who got hurt and not them.
We passed a few people who offered to help but I had to just hike out and get out of there. Thank goodness for good Vasque boots, my LEKI-life saving hiking poles, and a lot of adrenaline. Four miles though. Ugh. Well, at least it was early in the day and we weren't at the top eight miles in.
Luckily, Ben--just days before--got his license and he drove the five+ hours home (six+ if you count the long parade we hit and had to wait through!) as my right ankle was good for nothing. He drove right to Thompson Hospital (rather close to our house) where I learned I broke my fibula and where they put me in a splint, which was really a modified cast.
Two days later I went to Strong Hospital’s orthopedics department and am now in a fracture boot but can't bear any weight on it yet. I’ll probably be in it for about six weeks. No driving for me for some time as it is my right foot. I’ll be working from home for a while, too.
Needless to say, I am beyond disappointed. The thing I love most is being outside and hiking with my family. My goal has been 46 by 46 and I turn 46 in December. Depending on how recovery goes, I may need to revisit that goal. Ben and I had planned one more trip to finish up our 46. The four hikes we have left--Cliff/Redfield and Skylight/Gray--could be done as day hikes but they would be very, very long ones. If we did them as a backpack late September or early October, it would likely be pretty cold out there at night. I guess we will just see.
Kilimanjaro is six months out. With physical therapy, some acupuncture, and possibly a personal trainer, I have grand plans to heal up quickly.
Be careful out there! And happy trails to all,