Intentions are a means of getting ourselves where we want to be, rather than letting life’s currents spin us along. Not that letting currents take you into unknown and unexpected territory is a bad thing. After all, my tag line for this blog is “Life is more about floating down river than it is marching across a field.”
Balance is the key, between letting events and experiences unfold, and making sure you have enough of what sustains you in your life. The intention David and I committed to for this year — to get above tree line at least once a month — was meant to make sure we have enough hiking in our lives, because hiking to a view is nourishing for both of us. The effort, the exercise, often the friends with us on the hikes, the reliable renewal of being outdoors, and the visual expanse all contribute to the pleasure we get from being above tree line.
So does the hiking we did in Arizona and Utah count towards that intention? Yes. Even though we weren’t technically getting above tree line, we were hiking. A lot. In fact, in the Grand Canyon we hiked down to an elevation that would be far above tree line in New Hampshire, and for the entire time we were out west we were at elevations that would be above tree line here. We had expansive views on every hike, mostly because we were below tree line, we were outside for most of every day, and there was plenty of effort and exercise, often to get to a mesa top where there were trees again, after walking through rock-walled canyons.
We had the intention of going out west to center our days around being outdoors, walking in new territory, and seeing vastly different landscapes. And that’s what happened. It was grand.