When Alexander and I first started developing a “more-than-just-friends” relationship, we quickly discovered that we shared a passion for camping and hiking in God’s great outdoors, especially in the Rocky Mountains. As we progressed in our long-distance relationship, many of our days together were spent on some sort of hiking adventure — last May we visited one of his friends and explored near the Tetons, in the summer we meandered amongst wildflowers and camped out for the Needtobreathe concert at Red Rocks in Colorado, that fall I took him up to a lake in the forests near my college, in November he proposed after a short hike in his Michigan woods, and this May our honeymoon road trip to the Oregon coast involved numerous outdoor adventures in all different sorts of country.
Moving into marriage, we hoped that we’d be one of those couples always off on another camping adventure. Our home in Casper, Wyoming, locates us near enough to plenty of mountains for weekend getaways, or so we rationalized. But I don’t know if either of us really thought our grand dream of frequent camping and hiking would ever come true. I was certainly hesitant to think so.
Okay, fine, it’s kind of cliché. Exaggerated. Boastful.
Honestly, I kind of cringed, too when it came into my head. But when I was at the top of the hill, panting to catch my breath, and trying to take a picture of the incredible horizon, that phrase was what popped into my mind. “Victory View.”
I wish that hiking season wasn’t disappearing so rapidly behind us. But with fall setting in, early snows on the mountains, bears preparing to hibernate, and some buck-crazed hunters out on the prowl, hiking up into the Pioneer Mountains probably isn’t the greatest idea. Not that I wouldn’t go anyway if I had a pistol and a few buddies willing to join me…. Honestly, the hike I took up there this fall with some friends was so incredible that I literally feel a little desperate to get back there again.