Follow the leader

October 5, 2014.

We drove up to Mt. Hood for a weekend yoga retreat led by my friend Eugene. Two days ago I led a hike to McNeil Point for the Mazamas (my most popular one yet!) and today I got to do the following.

Eugene offered to lead a short hike in the forest outside the Mazama Lodge. I had no idea where I was relative to the trail systems around here, so I gladly hopped on board. I packed a small backpack with basically the ten essentials and gathered with a small group who wanted to go.

It was one of those perfect weather days. A day you’d like to bottle up and store on the shelf, ready to open up when you really needed it. We had to use our sunshine today though, so I was happy to have the opportunity to do so.

We hiked through the forest to a creek with a little waterfall. We rambled along seldom-used trails. We bush-whacked cross country. We ambled under ski-lifts. We balanced on logs. It was a really fun mini-adventure.

It was odd to be at a ski resort in the summer. The infrastructure looked entirely out of place. Even the upper mountain looked fairly drained of snow. It was incredible to think about how much this very spot would change in the winter. The snow would be so high that I’d be buried far beneath it!

I don’t know how far we walked, how high we climbed, or even where we were. I was completely in “follower” mode. I rarely take the opportunity to do that, but I felt that here it was totally appropriate and somewhat necessary. I’d chosen to make this weekend about restoration, re-setting and re-focusing. A walk in the woods behind a trusted leader was just what the doctor ordered.

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