June 20



June 20
Cassandra:  The ascent to Cutthroat Pass is ridiculous right now.  The trail switchbacks up the mountain, but due to the snow, following switchbacks is almost harder and more dangerous than just going straight up.  So Jason picked a line and we slowly stair-climbed our way to the elevation necessary to then traverse the mountain.  (We didn't want to go higher than the trail!)
At the top, the trail was every-so-often visible with about 30 ft. sections, etc. with those mounds of snow to get over in-between.  At one point, we came upon an extremely steep mound to get over-we were shoving our ice axes in the snow at about chest-high.  We could pretty much just lean to the right a little bit and we'd be against the snow.
I paused behind Jason to let him get a bit ahead of me.  While I was watching, I saw his feet start to slide out underneath him.  This had happened before so it wasn't a new sight.  But the problem was that instead of having a big slope of snow below us, there was the mound of snow about 15 ft. high, and then a rock-cliff that had no bottom in sight.  I immediately thought of him self-arresting himself (which for those of you unfamiliar with the term, it, minus the details, just simply means that you use your ice axe to help you stop sliding down) as his body slid out from underneath him.  I started frantically yelling "Hubby?!  Hubby?!"  I looked to his hand that was on the ice axe, and watched in horror as he lost his grip.. and completely let go...

Still screaming, I watched him slide down the mound of snow toward the cliff and felt frozen in a moment as I watched his feet land on a skinny patch of the trail that was starting to protrude out from the mound.  I immediately started crying as I realized I had just witnessed a miracle...That piece of ground, I felt, came from nowhere.  If he had slid down mere inches closer to me, his fate would have been different.  I couldn't help but feel wrapped in the arms of grace, and helpless as I still stood on the mound, yet to cross that section.

Jason is now telling me, "Don't do this now, don't do this now" as I'm uncontrollably shedding tears of amazement, thankfulness, fright, and from the simple presence of the King .  

Jason had to kick steps up to me so that I could inch my way down to the trail.  I sat down on the ground as soon as I got there.  At this moment, my tears are still present and I say to Jason "Now this is unsafe".  The trail continued around a corner that butted out, and there was another mound to get over!  And more cliff...

The rocks below looked safer to try and climb than the snow, so Jason attempted it.  I watched on, praying that he wouldn't slip again.

Never have I felt so much love for Jason-my mind could't help but think about the what-ifs, and to have witnessed a near-death situation with him, my perspective has forever been changed..

Jason made it and said that the trail around the corner was different and not nearly as sketchy, and that made me feel so much better...but I still had to get over there...

Jason attempted to come towards me over the snow, but again, that snow was so soft that the top layers just completely crumbled away and was unsafe to continue on.  I now said that I would climb the rock, and never before was I so grateful for my limited rock-climbing experience.  There were great hand-holds which made the traverse so much better than going on the snow.  On the other side, the cliffs transformed into snow slopes, which by now, I would take any day...

I had never experienced anything like that before-I had no strength left but the strength that was given to me.  I had to believe that if we could be taken through that, that we would then be taken through the rest, so one step at a time was all I could do.

I pretty much cried my way to Cutthroat Pass.  Any time I thought about Jason being alive, or that I had just witnessed a miracle, or that step-by-step we were getting closer to getting off of that mountain, tears welled up in my eyes.  I was ever so grateful to be alive-together. 

I had been touched by His hand...


Your comment will be posted after it is approved.

Leave a Reply