He told me that He still can't believe that I agreed to go out with Him the very first time. He said this at an elevation of 11,749 feet. It was our 30th anniversary and we had decided to hike to the summit of the mountain that dominates our view every day. We live at the base of an impressive mountain range. Although we had talked about it forever, and we have lived in the same general area our whole married life we had never climbed it.
The trail head is well marked and since it is a popular destination we knew we could find our way fairly easily. We are both active and physically fit and so we were not worried about the strenuous hike. I think like many who live in mountainous regions, we feel comfortable exploring, and often go in fairly lightly packed. We knew exactly where we were and felt both safe and comfortable with the task. The trail was clearly marked by a well worn path. However there were a few places where we either couldn't see the marker or followed the wrong one and we had to turn around and get back on the right path. We took what we thought was enough water, but soon found that we had run out. He was certain that we would find fresh springs along the way, and we did. It was hotter than we expected and the icy water flowing from inside the mountain was pure bliss. We stopped along the way periodically, but we kept going. For years we had seen pictures of beautiful wildflowers along the trail. We were disappointed when we reached the meadow and found that the flowers had come and gone. It was about this point where fatigue set in. We could see the saddle ahead, but the trail before us looked rocky and desolate. Luckily, together we were determined to reach the summit. We finally reached the saddle and the views were fantastic. He joked that this was good enough and maybe we should turn around. From the saddle we could see the summit and it didn't seem very far away. We had come so far why would we turn around now?
Continuing we momentarily lost sight of the summit and as we rounded a bend we could not find the trail. Instead we were faced with a craggy and rocky roadblock. Luckily some descending hikers appeared between the rocks and marked the way. This was a rough patch. There were spots where He had to boost me up to the next foot hold. Finally the summit was in view. All we had to do was traverse the cliff face composed of a treacherously steep and narrow zig-zaged path up the face of the mountain. This was the most difficult leg of the hike. The temperature was dropping as we got closer, and the wind was whipping so hard I felt as if it would just pick me up and carry me away. We rarely looked up and clung to the rocks as we slowly climbed higher. Reaching the summit we found a narrow peak about 6' wide by 10' long. We were alone. It was cold. The wind was howling around us. The view was breathtaking. As we clung to each other on the precipice He said " I still cant' believe you went out with me".
He made the climb...
...one more reason I love Him.