Friday, July 08, 2011

The King of the Hill

While hiking, we were quite content to make it to the top of this little peak. Happy to sit here and savor the beauty.

But not Cliff. Off he went, seeking higher ground. Jeri, not to be outdone, followed after him.

Over snowfields, they plodded forward.

Far from us, along the edge of this great cirque, carved by a glacier. Two little dots in a field of snow.

Till they arrived up here! Two little dots on the edge of the world. Gulp.

And a zooming closeup! There was no way up, but by a ladder, hanging perilously over a steep cliff.

Yikes!

As we were doing this...

They were doing THIS! Up to the top of another steep peak, with God's snowy footprint on the side.

Jeri had the good sense to come down. She inched down using a rope attached to the top of the hill, then side-stepped down the rest of the way. We were pretty much biting our nails observing all of this.

Cliff, so aptly named, stayed up at the top. King of the hill.

Yeah.

Then he cautiously lowered himself, via the rope.

Then cleverly slipped off his backpack...

and slid down to the bottom! Smart chap!

Jeri watched him slide into home base safely.

Then we start the hike down. Breathtaking, in a word.

This hiking team likes to live on the edge.

This dog, too. Apparently he lives in the village below, but hikes up the trails to pick up new friends.

Back at the lodge. Here's to good friends--Joey's revered Moose Drool Beer, and a fond farewell.
~~~
From here we are on our way to the airport. Trip over, but we got to visit another place our son loved so much, and leave some of his ashes there in a stream in Denali National Park. A bittersweet trip made sweeter by the company of Aidan and good friends.
We miss you, Cliff and Jeri.
Thanks for everything.

3 comments:

karen gerstenberger said...

I'd be with you and Joey's ukelele - you were plenty high up there! That last bit of the hike that Cliff & Jeri made was truly breathtaking...as in, holding one's breath! But the view downhill, with the water in the background, is miraculous.
Your Joey really LIVED his life. The more I hear about him, the more I wish I could have met him. He inspires me. Thank goodness that he & Rachel took that big trip together! xoxoxo

Jeri said...

That place was incredible! Yes, Joey really lived his life and I believe he has inspired many of us to do the same. Cliff & I lived vicariously through Joey & Rachel in their travels and it was so special to visit the places they had been to and sharing it with his Mama, Papa, & Aidan made it better than we could have ever imagined!

Anna/Flowergardengirl said...

I can't hardly look at these mountain photos cause it makes me very dizzy and very scared. I'd be useless and fretful watching all this on the edge stuff. it's all so big. Reminds me a bit of when we lived in Montana. I kept thinking a bear was gonna eat us. I bet you never thought me to be so silly--but I am. I am just a big scaredy cat.

I love the sky in all these photos. Making music up there for Joey is extra special. I wonder if we are closer to God on the mountaintops. Physically I mean.

When I'm in the presence of anything so utterly over the top--such as your Alaska trip---I feel the creative power of God and the experience makes Him more real to me. You don't get to do or see that very much these days---so happy you got to go. Looks like the weather was agreeable.