As Mark sits up in his cot…
…and stands outside his full-height wall tent…he wonders what that sound is!
Yes! Quickly! Grab your six-D-cell Maglight! The one that doesn’t add much weight to your pack! Because that wouldn’t scare anything off!!
It’s a rock! Ha! Mark, you dummy. You really had yourself going, didn’t you? At least you can keep this to yourself, should you choose to…
The naturalist within me suspects the whistling might have been either (i) a marmot – except that they are not nocturnal that I know of, or (ii) wind through the crevice between the rock formation – that no breeze seems to be ruffling Mark’s Brylcreemed hair.
Such a mystery!
Speaking of being sucked in, I wonder who is keeping Mrs. Trail company these days. Local lotharios or possibly the odd drifter or saddle tramp passing through Lost Forest.
And as always, the commodious tents, one hiker per.
Echoing Richard, it is amazing that a seasoned world traveler and adventurer of Mark Trail’s supposed caliber would be put off by “strange whistling sounds” that likely came from the wind passing through rocky crevices.
But this sequence also displays Mark’s apparent internal doubts about the Yet’s existence (“Can it be!?”). Could Doc Camel’s obsession be creeping into Mark’s subconscious?
Otherwise, if Mark has room in his magically-expanding backpack for a full-sized tent, sleeping bag, pillow, and a personal tent-lantern, I see no problem with also squeezing in a giant flashlight. Maybe Mark has adapted the modern traveler’s habit of extreme-compacting, where every item is tightly rolled, pressure-shrunk, or dehydrated to fit in as small a space as possible.
Hey, maybe Dr Camel had the Sherpas set that rock formation up as a practical joke on Mark…?!
. . . and is whistling in the dark?
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