Bro. Humiston with his kids Andrew, Nathan, and Natalie, Bro. Wells and his kids Brittany and Ryan accompanied by a kid, Brandon, and my younger sister, Jordyn, all headed up to Zion this past week for some hiking in Zion National Park.
Yesterday, we were invited to join them at Angel's Landing. Though somewhat sick, Katie, Jenee and I all decided to go. We headed up- got in free!!- and spent about half an hour waiting for the group to return from their morning hike.
After lunch, we headed up! The very beginning isn't that bad and it's the easiest part. The moment it got steep, I went to the very back and stayed there the rest of the trip. Bro. Wells didn't want to leave anyone behind and his kids wanted to do the trek with them, so they lagged far behind as well.
It was embarrassing and if I had the energy, I would have used it to laugh at myself. I hadn't thought I was so out of shape, or maybe it's my heart, or maybe the eleveation or maybe it was all of that together. But I was so close to giving up, especially because we never knew how close we were or not.
It took us two hours- which isn't that bad because the usual is three apparently- to get to the top and then walk across the very end of the spine to find our group all lying about. They had to have been there for quite a while, that's all I know. At the top without the chains, Bro. Wells grabbed my arm [plus a few times before] to keep me from falling which was, to be honest, somewhat embarrassing. But I accepted his help [humility, oui?], and managed to make it to the top.
-I should mention that Andrew ended up taking my backpack to be a gentleman, I think his father had convinced him, and it was actually very light compared to everyone else's bags [Andrew hadn't had one before], except he also took my water bottles with him and so I helped drain Bro. Wells' water- but I gave him one of my waters at the top which he drained.-
The way back down wasn't as hard, but it still took over an hour. It was so steep, I felt something in my back and then in my ribs being pinched. We took our time on this as well, in the back, and enjoyed the scene and what we had hiked up before. Bro. Wells and I were very much the slowpokes and eventually found everyone in the freezing cold river.
Not everyone, but mostly. I got my ankles in but that was it because I wasn't hot or sweaty so much coming down or anything. A few jumped up, and we chatted a little before heading out.
A few people got changed and we had a mix up with the rides with Katie and Andrew heading off, but I enjoyed being around those familiar people again as they waved at strangers driving by.
We joined one another for dinner and I had a booth with Jordyn, which was quite fun because we got to chat and seeing as we've sort of been busy this summer with our own activities, and we don't talk on the phone or anything else, it was just nice.
Altogether, I thought the day, though near to my death, went well and was well spent although I had missed several things in order to do this. I realized, however, I hadn't spent so much time looking around on top as relaxing- I was more centered on myself than where I was.
I think I regret that. But at the same time, I'm not sure how much I would have gotten by staring out before me. I know that may sound vain, stupid, or ridiculous, but the magnanimous thoughts people seem to get about things while up in the mountains, sometimes I just don't understand. And personally, it is a lot of rock. It doesn't even sparkle. It's Utah, after all.
Which really makes me sound mean. But can I honestly apologize for what I think? It would contradict myself. Maybe someday I'll see more, though, we shall see. I do know however, there is something great out there, especially at that height in that space and everything- something surreal and bigger than us all.
I will end with my packing list you should always use for a hike:
=If you don't have a camelback or anything, bring at least two waterbottles
=Energy fueled snacks, like jerky or granola bars. A piece of fruit for the top
-Wetwipes [something to clean hands]
-And of course, a camera.