The day comes. Presently, the sun slits the sky in range beyond and we must break camp. There is much distance to cover. We move almost liquid like up the base. The mile and one half is all we could cover before the storm settled in around us. Yet it is also beautiful. The snow lands on the rocks and melts away, softening the earth beneath our feet and chilling the night air.
Three days and presently we break camp. Moving up the face, a soft winter blanket begins to shroud the trees and bushes. The quietness of cold settles into the hearts of all life as well as our own. We begin to feel alone, time fades beneath us with each step forward. The thin blanket becomes thicker, denser, much more difficult to traverse with each day that passes. Life, any sign, is scarce as the snow deepens beyond our ability to feel the Earth beneath us. The occasional ram or two may cross our path. We settle in.
Here we stay. How long, I could not perceive. But presently we break camp. A small ewe from a rocky crag watches in the distance with almost a humorous look; as if it recognizes the amount of effort it takes to lift our legs, push ourselves forward, up the face and into the snow. The blizzard is upon us now, turning the soft sheen of white into a slit of gray, as we squint our eyes to keep our lids from freezing. Determination fuels our muscles; focus is our drive. Where a mile becomes a year, a hundred yards become months, and a hundred feet become weeks. We settle in. The bitterness bites at our skin, pricks our joints, but presently we must break camp. Onward now, to the summit. Each step an eternity. The clouds are below us now. We stand but feet away from the top of our effort.
Reaching it, a silence, a rebirth, a knowing that all is beauty and there is love. Warm, sensitive and giving; even in the midst of the cold. We raise our foot one last time, step off the edge and into the mind of GOD.