In the Rockies

In the Rockies
Butler Gulch

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Gems: Friends, Fall Colors and a Lake

Yesterday's hike was a chance to walk through golden Aspens with two friends. The three of us don't have that opportunity as often as I would like.

We stepped through golden leaves above our heads and beneath our feet. We remembered other hikes, other times we'd walked those paths.

The path to Gem Lake is steep in places, but just under 2 miles. We felt so good when we reached the lake. The sign just beyond reminded us that the trek on to Balanced Rock was over two miles beyond--not such a short hike after all.

We have walked some of life's long roads together too. Some have been bumpy, rocky, with hills that were hard to climb. These women represent deep friendships that any would be fortunate to have. Others have walked rutted and muddy roads with me. Others have shared my spiritual journey. But these two have shared hikes that allowed me to walk through fears, climb paths I would never have thought I could, in reality and metaphorically. They have been with me through life-changing spiritual awakenings--and during the upheavals that have accompanied those awakenings. Another friend commented recently on how often sadness comes with peace--that giving up of a dream--with an end to striving for something that's time has passed. Wisdom that is hard earned.

We relished the beauty of the fall colors, the aspens that were approaching red-orange. The hike to Gem Lake seemed new and familiar at the same time. Our cameras gave us new eyes. We marveled at the small and the grand. It's not balanced rock that drew us to that spot, but the grandeur of fall's forest. And we followed each others steps as we made the walk out. Our separate paths came together for a time of joy and wonder.

I am blessed to have wise women friends.

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