Monday, August 16, 2010

Hiking and Boldness

On the weekend my family and I hiked the Canadian Mount Everest Expedition Trail. The trail, located in the foothills and front ranges of the Canadian Rockies, is dedicated to the members of the 1982 Canadian Mount Everest Expedition.

The hike took us through two kilometers of beautifully preserved forest. Except for the woodsy trail winding through the trees the forest floors remain untouched. Moss grows in abundance dotted with tiny mushrooms. Trees stretch so far up to the sky that they block out the sun. Wildflowers paint the lush, green landscape with specks of vibrant colour. As our family reached the top of the trail we were rewarded with a spectacular view of the lake framed by the majestic mountains. It was truly breathtaking.

I was so excited to experience this with my family. It was such a thrill to trek out to the mountains with my husband and three children. Our two older children stopped along the trail to pick up pine cones and inspect hollow trees. Our two year old kept up every step of the way and only stopped twice to hitch a short ride with Daddy. It’s during these outings that I look back at our plan to simplify our summer and am grateful for the decision we made. Sitting on top of a mountain with my family made me truly appreciate the importance of slowing down.

When I got home I did a little research on the history of the trail. Laurie Skreslet of Calgary and sherpas Sungdare and Lhakpa Dorje were the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest on October 5, 1982. This made Skreslet the first Canadian to set foot on the top of Mount Everest. The expedition was also mixed with an abundance of tragedy as cameraman Blair Griffith was killed in an icefall and three sherpas, Pasang Sona, Ang Chuldim and Dawa Dorje, died in an avalanche. It made me wonder what keeps someone going in the face of all that tragedy? What makes someone want to summit Mount Everest in the first place?

Flipping through my photos I was reminded of a quote on the plaque at the beginning of the trail. The quote reads, “Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” Goethe.

So I guess that was my answer, boldness.

People have always fascinated me. From the couple who give up their nine to five jobs in suburbia to start a coffee company in Brazil, to the mother who chooses to homeschool her children, to those who feel compelled to climb a mountain. I guess what I really admire is their boldness. Their boldness to follow their dreams and live life authentically.

So, today I took some time to think about the quality of boldness and ponder how I might incorporate a little more boldness into my life each and every day.


  1. Looks like a great time!! What a wonderful post. I love that quote...

  2. Gorgeous photos! I like that quote to. When I look backwards, I realize that the best decisions I've ever made, have been the bold ones.

  3. I really like this post. I've often wondered, as well, what keeps people going in the face of tragedy.

  4. What a beautiful place! Looks similar to our mountains here in northern Utah.

    Love the Goethe quote and your post in general. Sometimes it takes boldness to step out our comfort zones, but in the end it's always worth it. Reminds me of the quote "it's better to have tried and failed than never to have tried at all" (not sure who said it).

    Beautiful photographs as well:)