Unexpected Change

Check the weather.  Take your hiking pack.  Water.  Treats, leash, bowel and waste bags for the dog.  Look at the app and/or map to plan an unknown journey.  Boots.  Walking Stick.  Camera/Phone.  We are prepared for an early morning 4 mile hike in town on a new trail in Palmer Park.  Or so I thought. 

Within 10 minutes of climbing on the north side of the park, storm clouds rolled off of the mountains to the west and grew in size.  The mountain slowly disappeared as unexpected winds blew it away under the dark billows. 

At 40 minutes into the hike, rain droplets are felt as we are on the highest southern point.  No lightening or thunder yet, but greyness descends to the South of the park decreasing visibility.  The wind picked up, temperature dropped and we are totally unprepared for rain.  

“Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies.” Psalms 148:4 NIV

“Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them.” Ecclesiastes 9:12 NIV

Cold, wind driven rain begins with only hats to protect us.  We begin to descend and look for any markers to lead us back to the car.  I know about where we are, but this is unexpected chaos.  Muddy path, hard droplets, no hail or lightening, but we are chilled as the wind blew against us.  We have another 45 minutes to traverse the park before we get close to the car.    

The backpack now has rain jackets including ponchos.  It never rains in Colorado in the morning.  Until the unexpected happens – and it always does. 

How do you handle unexpected events?  What do you wish you could control regarding your hikes?  When have you been caught unprepared in the rain? 

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