By Simon Ambit
Though at times we lack an abundance of water and it may be considered by some to be an arid climate, our little area of Castle Country is saturated with natural beauty and hidden splendor. From the aspen groves surrounding Scofield Reservoir to the dungeon-like confines of the San Rafael Swell, there is no shortage of inspiring terrain to experience.
My family and I packed lunch and took a Saturday voyage down through The Swell last week and witnessed some awesome aspects that we’d not taken the kids to before. After eating lunch at Swinging Bridge and peering into The Sinkhole, we continued southward toward I-70. Sneaking under the freeway, we toured the accommodations of Swasey’s Cabin and checked in at Joe’s Office.
We then spent some time hiking among the spires, slots and sheer cliffs surrounding that area. It is a rugged and harsh terrain, but it also has a beauty that draws you in and seems to meld to something deep inside you. The slot canyons in particular have a voice all their own and call to me to explore and step back in time with each footstep deeper into labyrinth I wind.
On one occasion as we wriggled back into a crack in the wall, it opened up into a small little winding crevasse that stretched back about 50 feet deep and 8 feet wide. There in the dimness of that cavern was a scene of inspiring perseverance.
With its root ball clear of any soil and most of the drip line roots completely exposed to the elements, a large tree had forced its sub, AKA radical roots, down into the small cracks and tiny fissures of the stone walls in an effort to survive. The tree had then stretched and clawed its way toward the light above the confines of the dim room.
Overcoming the odds and forcing its way beyond the confines of the stone and the darkness, the tree rose triumphantly above the rim of the stone crater and now towered above its captor with a total height of approximately 40 feet!
Life is not often fair; at times, our opportunity for growth does not come among the richest of soil, the safety of the garden, the ease of bountiful water supply, nor ample sunshine. Sometimes, we are forced to make the best we can by capitalizing on what little light sinks into our life each day, drinking from the storms and finding strength among the stones. And as we continue to look onward and upward, we will find that one day we will stretch beyond what we once were and become the strength and determination that made us what we now are. Life is great; grow from the struggles and always seek the light!