Mike Sampson arrived at 5:30 a.m. and started unloading his equipment. We spent the next hour discussing the blueprints of the Labyrinth and how we both envisioned this to work. I brought up the switchbacks and the turning stones that will act as guides throughout the Labyrinth, which are to begin at the mound and mark the twists and turns as they come.

As expected, Mike put me on the defense as he explained that what I was asking for wasn’t possible. I’ve heard this before many times; I got my cup of coffee, and one more time approached him with what I was going for, including the switchbacks and turning stones.

Mike climbed onto his machine and started picking stones out of the pile to begin to lay out the foundation for the switchback. Five hours later what emerged was a very beautiful switchback, which molds perfectly into the rest of the mound. We didn’t complete it, but we built approximately half. Now I had a good solid idea about where we were going next. It seemed as if we’d have more than enough materials to continue to build the Labyrinth over the summer and fall of 2019.

As the day came to an end, it was evident that there were still several switchbacks that could be incorporated into the mound. As it’s happened in the past, nature continues to dictate where we go with things next. I walked the mound, and then the first switchback; it all worked and felt like there were a clear seven circuits and three possible switchbacks on the mound, and four circuits on the ground. We had arrived!

As Mike loaded his equipment, I smiled, and I said: “thank you, my friend, you always give me what I ask for, it’s been a pleasure working with you for over the last 15 years and I look forward to the future”.