North on the Snake Trail ran counter clockwise about 1 mile from the upper parking lot, there is hidden somewhere a nest of bad ass hornets. Several of my trail running buddies have been stung by these very vicious pests, and earlier this week, Dana got nailed by one of them. It was time to retaliate! I loaded up my back pack with an extra thick sweat shirt, since these critters have no problem stinging through clothing, a can of extra-heavy-duty wasp spray that supposedly should shoot out 27 feet, and four Benadryl in case I got stung. To outsmart the hornets, I snuck around the back way, going CLOCKWISE. Ahh....the element of surprise! Actually, going this way I knew pretty close to where I had to put on my wasp armor and lock and load. With sweat shirt in place, and the spray can shaken and ready, I cautiously tiptoed up the trail.I scanned the woods on either side of the trail looking for the hornets buzzing around, hoping they would lead me to their nest. About 50 yards from where the attacks had occurred, I spotted a red hornet flying low, probably looking for whatever it is they eat. I nailed that sucker, and the spray did in fact have an instant affect. It immediately pissed him off!!! He flew towards me, then hit the ground, then flew up into a tree, buzzing loudly all the way before finally dying.One down, but where is the nest?? I went on a little further, and saw another hornet, this time hitting him cleanly with the spray. It was a quick kill, which renewed my faith in the so-called high power wasp spray I had laid out 3 bucks for.This guy was big, and I was l little concerned that I only had one can.
After covering about a quarter mile, I was sure I had gone well past where the nest was, so I turned around to make another pass through. It was about this time that a trail runner whom I did not know came jogging through. I stopped him and warned him of the possible impending attacks, but either he could not hear me over his Ipod, or was not concerned. I followed just behind him watching to see if he stirred up the flying warriors. No luck. I decided to go back through one more time, this time tossing sticks and rocks into the trees. (I now question the intelligence of this tactic.) After my 2nd toss, I heard the sound of a small helicopter near my ear, and then it felt like a hummingbird had dive bombed me. It was one of the killer hornets sent in to take me out. But, his stinger was not long enough to penetrate my thick armor (St Francis sweatshirt.) And, I utilized an effective military tactic that was really more of a girlie shriek, followed by a very quick sprint with my arms flapping and waving in the air.