Moonlit Hike at Mt. Lassen

moonlit-twilight

On September 22nd, the Autumnal Equinox, I went for a magical moonlit hike to celebrate my boyfriends birthday (born on Sept. 21st).  Months ago he’d read about full moon hikes at Mount Lassen, a nearby volcano, so we were excited to finally get out there. We weren’t let down.

It was both a beautiful shared experience, and a personal synchronistic journey.

Recently I’ve been following a video course from don Oscar Miro-Quesada on The Shift Network, studying the Pachakuti Mesa Tradition more. We’ve been focusing on connecting with the energies of Pachamama (Mother Earth). This involves deep breathing, some chanting, connecting to Source, and a lot of opening up to possibilities.

In the past I’ve been distant with Earth energies, wanting so much to soar in the sky with the blue jays, vultures, and condors, but now I’m learning to come back down. I’m learning of the deep value that lies in grounding. This was reflected in our journey.

We arrived at dusk to find the normal $25 fee waived in honor of National Park Day – a holiday neither my boyfriend nor I were aware of. The alignment made my insides happy. With all the cars in the parking lot he thought the mountain would be crowded, but I had a good feeling.

“Some people will be on their way down, I’m sure it will be perfect.”

The moon was almost full, shining brightly behind and to our right as we started our climb. Forward and to the left was a brilliant sunset behind a rocky mountainscape. Cellphone pictures don’t do it justice.

The pink hues got deeper as the sun drew lower until the clouds stacked in deep red, peeking between the mountain peaks like layers of lava in the distance. I felt like I was peering into the past of creation. The presence of the Volcanic Apu was with us.

lava_clouds

Even with the stunning Mountain Spirit, and all of the Elements surrounding, the hike wasn’t the easiest. The trail to the peak is 2.5 miles uphill, with a lot of switchbacks. I’m not used to high altitude and hiking at 10,000 miles was a new experience. I quickly had to rest, and soon at every switchback I was stopping to breathe. When we neared the top I had to lay down for a minute. My eyes swam in the twilit dark and the thin air was making me lightheaded.

There were a few times I had the thought of giving up – it felt like so much effort to push forward. My boyfriends presence reassured me. He was uplifting and encouraging each time I needed rest, and though I worried I was going too slow he was at peace and enjoying the scenery. I chanted the childhood mantra in my head “I think I can, I think I can…” and internally smiled. I would make it to the top.

When we arrived at the summit the chill wind of Wiracocha (Grand Creator) surrounded us. There was a large un-melted patch of snow to marvel at.  It was nighttime now, and all of the other adventurers had traveled back down the trail. We had the entire summit to ourselves.

I turned to my boyfriend and grinned. “See, I knew it wouldn’t be crowded, we always have perfect timing.”

We rested and I had the chance to tone the directions and connect with each Spirit/Element. The moon had one of the biggest rings around it I’ve ever witnessed. I felt we were seeing the energy body of Her loveliness Mamakilla.

I left a crystal on the mountain as a blessing. I had a deep knowing that this trip was about giving, sacred reciprocity, balancing. Everything I received was internal.

The 2.5 mile journey down was easier than the climb up. Even though it was no Mount Everest, I left with a sense of accomplishment.

Sometimes I feel like I’m behind and can’t keep up with everyone rushing around me, but on the mountain I found that taking the time I needed to rest allowed me to maintain momentum.  It’s not always about being the first one to the top. We were able to enjoy the silent solitude of being-ness, with just one another and nature to witness, having arrived last. And that was magical.

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