Thursday, June 27, 2013

Mountain Adventures, pt.1

One hot June day a couple weeks ago before Br. Philip left to go back to the seminary, we decided to to on a drive and look for a cool, shady place -- preferably with some running water nearby -- where we could spend the afternoon playing, splashing, and exploring.  Everyone here knows the drill:  get into play clothes, pack snacks and bottled water, cram into the minivan and turn up the tunes.  We decided to head south to hunt this time and, approaching the Billy Creek wildlife refuge, we spied a dirt road, zig-zagging up the mountains in the distance. Knowing that there are a lot of creeks and reservoirs in that vicinity, we turned southeast and followed and followed and followed, up and up and up...

And this is what we saw when we got to the top:

See the sawtooth range jutting up over there?  That, I believe, is the backdrop for John Wayne's famous "reins in his teeth" scene in True Grit -- though a ridge and a valley over from where we took this picture.

Check it out.  Isn't it something? No water or place to play, but, just... Wow.  Most of us were glad we'd made the drive.

It was an incredible drive to an incredible view!

But not everyone was happy with the process of discovery. This is how William felt about getting there:

"Seriously, William?  Have I ever driven off a mountain that you know of?"

Muffled voice from under the beach towel: "I don't want to think about it!"

We tried to cheer him up, distract him...

"Smile, William!"

But he wouldn't smile and didn't trust his siblings when they told him it was safe to look.  A fellow knows when not to trust his puckish brothers and sisters.... (And his mother thinks he was probably wise not to.)

When we got to the top, we pulled over, and after a little cajoling, he finally took the towel off his head and agreed to get out for a picture, so long as he was standing next to Br. Philip, whom he could trust not to throw him over the edge....

This is the formal, rather abnormal shot:
Top to bottom, left to right: Theresa, Dominic, Cathy, Michelle, Br. Philip; Anna, Gabe, William

This one is more true-to-life:

In the end, I'm happy to report, nobody was thrown off the cliff.  Br. Philip kept his hand safely on William the whole time Mommy took pictures...  Then William got back in the car and covered his head again until his mother assured him that we really were back at the bottom of the mountain.

It was all good, despite William's worst predictions.  Everyone lived.

*Coming soon:  More of what we saw and found and did that day -- wildflowers, snowballs, and Llamas!  Too many pictures for one post. Stay tuned!

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