Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Last Pass

When we began our descent from the more northern valleys, we were in pretty good shape. The walking had become easier, the complaining less. We were in for a very difficult walk. First we walked through a canyon like this, with markhor and blue sheep scrambling along the edges high over head. The grass is more of a thorny brush than anything.

Then the number of small stream and river crossing increased. I fought with anything to always find a route that did not involve me walking through those icy waters with my bare feet, though I did once or twice. Walking sticks can go a long way in keeping you from falling in!

Yep! That's me!!
When we finally reached our campsite near the bottom of our final pass, the craziest thing happened. Suddenly a kind of pellet snow began to fall, almost as hard as hail, and the ground/tents/animals/baggage were a blanket of white within 15 minutes. We were so grateful for the kitchen tent we had brought out of storage so those walking with us who didn't have tents could huddle inside it for the night. It was frigid that night. Little Girl woke up so many times because she was cold.

Our tent covered with snow at the far right

Then it got worse because the next morning was icy cold and windy, and we had to climb up a mess of a hill covered in ice, snow, and mud. For every step forward, your feet slid back about 2 in the muck. We worried about the horse slipping down with the kids, but her 4 legs seemed much safer than our two carrying the kids.

And then we reached the top and saw this. It was one of the most glorious sights you can ever imagine, though the wind did not let up one second for us to really enjoy it. By the time I was there, my fingers could barely move. But wow, what a Creator we have! Look at His handiwork!

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