Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Climb.

I'd been wanting to climb Mt. Katahdin for sometime now, and what better time to go then the peak week of fall in New England? So, I found a willing hiking buddy and set off on an adventure the last few days.
Words cannot express the beauty and majesty we encountered along the way.

We set up camp in the rain and I must hand it to the fire-starter :e:xtraordinaire for managing to get a fire going while it was pouring. Granted there was a HUGE golf umbrella involved and several instances of smoke inhalation but it was an act of greatness none-the-less.

Thankfully, the rains held off on Thursday and we trekked up the mountain. Signing off at the Ranger's station at 7:45am we were a bit bummed that the trails we hoped to embark on were closed. Knife's edge (three feet wide with sheer drops on either side) was closed to ice so we settled for another route. Not 20 minutes in, however, I rolled my ankle... and with subsequent rolls afterward, I was a little gimpy. Couple that with taking my dear sweet time to make sure I saw every weird bug, took in every passing brook and listening to all the little sounds along the way... I was slower than Speedy McMountaineer I was hiking with. And despite the fact I now look like I have a cankle, it was worth it.
So I may be the clumsiest Mt climber you have ever seen but whatever, I attribute my clumsiness to the fact that I simply didn't WANT to watch my feet when I walked, I wanted to see everything around me, not the ground.

It took me a few days to process the experience because I truly don't have words to explain the majesty I encountered. I feel alive in nature and more impassioned there than anywhere else.... I had a lot of time to think... to process... and to dream. Ask me about it sometime and I'd be happy to share. ;) [Thanks to 'K' for the reminder to see everything with 'fresh eyes']

A quick comment I heard from my good 'ol hiking buddy - when I was complaining about my ankle but determined to get to the top- was: "it's not about the destination".
We hear that a lot but being there in the midst of climbing a mountain really made that statement hit home.
It's not about the destination... it's the journey.

It's who you are... and who you are becoming along the way.
Yes, I am clumsy and I'm sure my journey is clumsy...filled with spotters who are convinced I am going to give them a heart attack or people who make fun of me every time I stumble, trip, or fall. But in the end all that matters is who I am becoming along the way... who cares if I trip over a tent stake or fall on a few rocks along the way because my journey means I'm fixated on looking around, not at the ground.

:)



So what happens when photographers embark on an adventure sans their camera? cell-phone pictures!



3 comments:

Kari Crowe said...

isn't it exhilarating, Mark and I did one last year but I didn't have to gimp with a bum ankle kudos to you! Here is ours:
http://www.karicrowephotography.com/2008/08/colorado-adventures.html

Nicole Haley said...

How exciting to see another photographer's take on Katahdin! I just posted about it the other day! :D It looks like you had an amazing day with out without the ice! Congrats and thanks for sharing. :D

Joel and Keturah Mayer said...

These pictures are beautiful. It looks like a ton of fun. We were just in Maine and loved it.

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