yesterday, i joined some peeps from my church for our 2nd annual extreme snow shoeing adventure to rocky mountain national park.
(you can read more about our 1st annual trip here.)
i need to preface it by saying, i debated whether or not i should even go on this trip.
#1 reason - mr. lesley was sick and couldn't go (dang pneumonia!)
and more importantly...
#2 reason - last year's trip was scary!
i feared for my life more than once and might have said some expletives on the side of a mountain in front of my pastor...whoops:)
but i decided to go because, and let me emphasize, i was promised that this year i could take what they called the "easy" route.
meaning that i could stay on the trail instead of scaling the side of a mountain in snow shoes.
i wouldn't say that makes it "easy" but whatevs.
with that said, the trip started off well.
i went with a small group on the trail while the rest of the group practiced their back country snow shoeing skills.
the sun was shining.
the sky was bright blue.
all was well in the world.
(and i even had a chance to get a photo opp with mr. lesley...or something like that:)
then the whole group reconvened at the first lake to take a breather, enjoy the beautiful scenery...
get in some photo opps (i kinda love my shadow/sunglasses pic), and eat some snacks.
it was on this break where i was informed that we would not be breaking into two groups after all.
nope, everyone was going on the ridiculous route.
and i was visibly annoyed.
my pastor promised me it wouldn't be as hard as last year.
the snow was more packed down.
but i wasn't buying it.
however, i didn't have much of a choice.
so i sucked it up and made my way up the mountain.
with my faithful friend katie who was as equally terrified as myself:)
now, much to my surprise, once we started going, i realized i wasn't paralyzed by fear.
of course i was praying in my head the whole time (mostly repeating "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus," and "please God don't let me die"), but i found myself able to actually move my feet without whimpering or cursing at anyone.
i even went so far as to take out my camera and smile for a picture.
maybe i was actually having a good time:)
i'm not sure exactly what changed from the previous year, but i think a couple things definitely calmed me down...
#1 the wind was not nearly as strong as last year.
#2 my snow shoes actually fit me this year.
#3 clint, my pastor, stayed with katie and me almost the whole time, and he's pretty much as graceful as a gazelle on those snow shoes. he was all over the place no problem.
when we made it to the top i was so proud of myself.
not only for making it, but making it up feeling confident!
while at the top, i insisted we do something for thomas and danielle (our friends who couldn't be there this year, but got engaged on this very mountain last year during our first trip).
it only made sense to make everyone stand in the shape of a heart.
i am thankful for friends who will appease me, even when they think i'm a little looney tunes.
then it was time to slide back down the mountain.
which is a lot of fun but sometimes equally as terrifying as climbing up.
katie definitely wins best slide of the day.
her backwards, flailing, barely missing trees, screaming performance will go down in the record books!
we made our way back to the parking lot all in one piece, with just enough time to take one group picture and high tail it out of there for our reservations at oskar blues,
where we indulged in beers, burgers, and all kinds of delicious eats.
what started at something petrifying turned into a pretty great day.
3 cheers for facing my fears head on!
all in a days work here in God's country.