Sacrifice and Bliss

Sacrifice and Bliss. I first heard this expressed by Joseph Campbell.  It hit home, I totally understood.

Here’s one example of Sacrifice and Bliss in my life that happened in August, 2012.  Old Snowy, a 7,900 foot peak in the Goat Rocks Wilderness beckons me.  She promises grandeur…at a price. I can’t resist. Sacrifice and Bliss.

Throw on my 27 lb backpack (yeah I’m a nerd, I weighed it), destined to spend the night at the summit.  Start hiking. Determined. Focused. Wondering what lies ahead.  Racing against time because of a late start.  Can I reach the summit before dark? Fear and excitement. Not much room for error.

Climbing higher. Trail goes from dirt to snow. Damn it! Snow slows me down, hides the usual path.  As I climb higher, I’m all alone. Must pace myself. Boulder field!  Exciting, be careful. Pay attention.  Move quick.

Daylight beginning to fade.  I can do this.  Legs and lungs burning. I like this. I hate this. Sacrifice and Bliss.

My internal guardian begins to speak- “What happens if you fall? You’re alone and no one is around for miles. Unlikely, but you could die.”  Sacrifice and Bliss.

I keep climbing higher.  Old Snowy beckons, “I’m worth it”.  Getting closer. Confidence building.

I got this! The T O P!  Gorgeous sunset greets me.  I’m on top of the world.  It takes a while to soak in. Sacrifice and Bliss.

Without notice it hits me.  Arms raised in victory I yell out, “I LOVE YOU!”  I continue to yell out to the world things I don’t remember.  Awe! Wonder! Gratitude!  Kid like, I scamper among the rocks. Taking pictures. Taking videos.  Smiling ear to ear.  Sacrifice and Bliss.

IMG_2134Snow = Slow travel. Watermelon snow- the orangish-red color is from algae.

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My final resting point at the summit of Old Snowy, 7,900 ft

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Sunset view of Mt Rainer

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Sunset view of Mt Gilbert and Ives.

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Sunset view of Goat Lake and Mt Rainer

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Morning view of Goat Lake and Mt Rainer

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