I recently had the great fortune of experiencing a most beautiful adventure with my husband, daughter, and parents. My mother and father were coming from California to visit, and my father very enthusiastically expressed his desire to see and experience something different this visit. So we made a family trip, and our adventures took us hiking around the Hoosier Pass Loop Trail, as well as fishing and exploring the Blue Lakes, all areas near Breckenridge, Colorado. Beautiful, amazing, overwhelming are all words appropriate for what we witnessed and saw while hiking a little over 11,000 ft. For many, it’s not every day that you get to be that high up, breathing that fresh air, and seeing those gorgeous lakes, valleys, and mountain ranges. But what stood out and moved me the most by the entire experience was seeing the joy and light just radiating from my father the entire time. The man couldn’t stop smiling, and I swear I saw him skip a couple of times as he yelled out to each amazing view, “THIS IS AMAZING!!!”
“Remember when you were a kid, (I was three) and we took our road trip here to Colorado?” my father asked enthusiastically, as I knew he would begin to reminisce the details of all our family adventures way back when. I actually didn’t remember a lot of that trip, but as I listened to him retell all the old adventure stories, it was as if I was hearing those stories for the first time. I was moved by the excitement in his voice and the expressive joyful look on his face as he remembered his great family adventures. And in that moment, I felt so much love, and so much pride for the man that passed down and gave me that very same passion and love for the great outdoors. I remember walking side by side with my father, my husband who had my daughter in her carrier was a little behind keeping pace with my mother, and I felt incredibly grateful to have had this moment with all the people I love the most in my life. I know that my daughter won’t remember this moment, she is only two, but she will see the pictures, she will hear the excitement in my voice and see the joy on my face as I reminisce with her, and hopefully her children one day. In the end, I only hope that I can pass on to her that same hunger and passion to get outside and live. And I want her to be proud of me for giving her that gift as well. I want her to be proud for passing the torch as they say, just as I am proud, and always have been of my father.