Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Super Full Moon

What is a super full moon? It's when the moon is at it's closest approach to the earth coincides with the phase of full moon. This is happening on July 12, 2014. This is also the day that I plan to summit Mt Whitney on the last day of my John Muir Trail thru-hike. The moon rises on July 11 at 8:37 pm. It reaches it's zenith (moon noon) at 12:59 am and it will set at 6:17 am on the morning of the 12th. The sun will rise at 5:53 am. So there will be a 24 minute period when then moon will be on the western horizon while the sun is on the eastern horizon.

Wow, there's lots of number in the previous paragraph. What I was trying to explain is that I am planning to be on the highest point in the Continental United States on the day when the Super Full Moon sets just after the sun rises. I know that I will not be alone in that there will be lots of others there at the same time. I will be getting up some time in the middle of the night so that I can climb from my last campsite to the summit prior to the sun coming up. The moon will be (super) full so it will be easy to see. I anticipate that there will be other hikers summiting that same morning so it'll be really cool and I am excited to experience the sunrise while standing on the top of a mountain over fourteen thousand feet above sea-level.

We (I) am so isolated from God's creation on a daily basis that it's easy to forget and overlook the grandeur that is all around us everyday. We (I) am so used to driving by stuff that I don't even see it anymore. I walk into my office first thing in the morning and most of the time don't exit the building until it's time to drive home. My home has climate control, four walls surrounding me, a smooth flat floor beneath my feet, and a roof over my head. I live in a box that keeps nature out, and I am glad that it does.

However, there is a part of me that is connected to nature, that comes alive when I am in the forest. I feel something special when the stream is laughing it's way down the mountain next to the trail I am following. Listening to the birds greet each other in the clear morning air takes my breath away and causes emotion to start seeping out the corners of my eyes. There is a part of me that experiences something close to transcendence when I feel the cool morning zephyr softly caressing my face as the sun peeks through the branches of the trees welcoming me to another day in God's grand playground.

Many of my closest friends don't understand the previous paragraph. They don't experience what I experience in that same place. They experience cold fingers and  sore feet and tired aching muscles. They are miserable from sleeping on the forest floor the night before. Breakfast was not convenient and they had to sit on the ground to eat it. It's been too long since their last shower and they are self-conscious about their appearance and their smells. I long for them to experience what I do, but they don't. I can't fix it for them nor can I force them to see it different than they do. Perhaps the only magic they'll ever experience in a moment and place like that is in a paragraph of words I write. It's such a poor substitute for the real thing, but its probably more than they want.

1 comment:

  1. I wish you the best! Enjoy your time over the weekend