High Sierra vacation

The last of July, my son Grant and I spent a carefree week hiking and exploring the high Sierra just west of Donner Lake.

We were part of a Sierra Club family outing, with nine other families from around the country and two capable leaders. Home base was the Sierra Club’s Clair Tappaan Lodge, which provided lots of wonderful food and a comfortable place to sleep.

Growing up in Reno, on the eastern edge of the mountains, I feel a strong connection to the Sierra: it’s inherent to my identity, and the grandeur brings me a palpable connection to the sacred. This trip was an opportunity for me to spend time with Grant and to introduce him to an important part of my life and a place just to have fun. The continual vistas of mountains, lakes, meadows, and stars recharged my batteries and reminded me of a few of life’s priorities.

Looking across Flora Lake, where this photo was taken, I penned these thoughts:

Clouds proceed across the blue backdrop.
Granite cascades to water’s edge,
competing with pine and brush.
The breeze – no wind – gusts across the lake,
rippling water and bushes along the shore.
Chilled, I move into the sunlight.
The breeze stills and the sunshine becomes hot,
sending me back into the shade.
Nature plays this game
and lets me join in for too short a time.
An afternoon out of an eternity.

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