It took most of the day to climb the mountain. Not because it was a large mountain, but because we would stop whenever we found something interesting. The ascent known as ‘1000 Steps’ had fallen into disrepair long before we were old enough to climb them ourselves, and much of the steps were rotted away. We were unsure whether there even had been that many steps or it was an Urban Legend. Some spots were easy to climb, yet others involved more mountainside than wood planks. Halfway up we found the rusted remains of an old mining cart, and track. Abandoned by the Americans in World War II after the war ended and they were positive our town was not on the invasion list. We kicked at it until no more rust crumbled off, or we found something else to look at. The view was far reaching looking south-west towards the Kinehan Islands. We climbed until the steps ended and edge around Mount Hays and edged around to the actual forts themselves. There were easier ways to get the the haunted forts, this was Summer vacation and we had all the time in the world. Although the bears are plenty on this island, we were not afraid. We were one with the land, had lived here forever, climbed these trees until we reached the sun, built dams with mud and sticks until lakes formed. No animal would harm us as we were them and they were us. We made it to the moss covered concrete just in time to watch the sun catch the far green on fire and spread across the bend of the earth. Made a small fire of our own and told stories of how the world was created. Then, as all good camping trips go, the stories turned to ghosts. Broken hearted spirits waiting for their lost loves; Mothers reliving the deaths of their children. We talked of father’s who spoke with the backs of their hands, and teachers who didn’t listen. After the fire stalled, we wrapped ourselves in the blanket of colours from the Aura Borealis, and promised our next trip would be to the North Pole to find Ships frozen in time. Taming Eskimos, and building Igloos. Riding the backs of Whales until we dropped off the edge of the world. No one knew who fell asleep first.