Hilary Goes Hiking Part II: Adulation for Banshee Canyon

I am nothing if not a fan of losing my way with words. But the more I explore the more I struggle to elucidate the memories. It’s almost as if every word in the English language is too restrictive or cliché to do the scenario justice. Sometimes all I can think is, “Wow, what a wonderful world we live in.” Other days, if you’re lucky, I’m a little more articulate than a drooling baby.

Hiking through Banshee Canyon was a spiritual experience, seemingly observed and emboldened by the faces in the gorge. I could feel the wisdom of the earth seeping through my skin, brought in on the twisting winds and carved out in the petroglyphs.

I believe every person given the opportunity to take a climb up the rings and into the canyon will take away a piece of the peace and love that lives there. I’d like to think that’s why the canyon is filled with divots and holes; the magic and history that fills the soil is literally given to each traveler. Continue reading

Hilary Goes Hiking Part I: The City Girl Adjustment

I sat on the curb in the still of the morning, listening to the hum of traffic on the I-15. I glanced at my phone, wondering if my decision to get up so early would end up being as regrettable as it felt at the moment. There was nothing I wanted more than to crawl back into my bed and drift into a deep slumber. I, however, had committed to seeing this day through. I had never been hiking before and today was the day I decided to redress this sad fact. Damn me.

I’ve always been aware that my home town sits surrounded by beautiful hiking trails that would take little effort on my part to experience. And for as much crap as I have gotten from my friends about it, I’ve just been more focused on having foreign adventures. But now that I was back in town, it was time for me to start familiarizing myself with the beauty surrounding Las Vegas.

When fellow writer and friend, Matthew O’Brien, expressed interest in checking out one of the national preserves, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to get my hike on. So here I was at the crack of dawn sitting on the curb in front of my house, cursing my enthusiasm.

Continue reading

Cerro Negro Part 2: There’s volcanic ash in my bra

We stopped about halfway up the volcano to catch our breath. The rain had just start letting up and Babs wasn’t sure how long our window was before it would start pouring down again (or before one of us would be struck by lightning). She gave us the reader’s digest informational speech on Cerro Negro to speed up our downtime.

I took advantage of the camera-safe moment to document our frightening experience, since I was too distracted and excited to really pay attention.

Babs talking about the volcano

As you can see, our adventure brought about mixed emotions of exhilaration, wonder, and a dash of misery (it was freezing). Continue reading