It was a morning made for climbing up the Stansbury Mountains with the sun. The sky was a bright blue. Overnight rain had cooled the air, as well as arrested the endless dust normally thrown up from tires traveling on dry, mountainous dirt roads. So Kilee Johnson and I were excited to get our wheels in motion.
“Let’s go to that place we’ve never been before,” she said as we drove up the road toward North Willow Canyon.
Her suggestion heightened our anticipation and I could feel excitement in my chest as we drove along in the side-by-side ATV. Wind passed over the doors of the ATV and across us, and it wasn’t long before we were well rewarded by her choice.
The road turned from dirt into a trail of loose rock, marked by route signs. I flipped the switch over to four-wheel-drive and shifted the transmission to low.
“Can we go up that?” Kilee asked as we looked at a troubling part of the trail.
It had been washed out and transformed into a deep crevasse, punctuated by large boulders. And it all came together at seemingly impossible angles. I could feel my breath catch before I answered her.
“I don’t know!” I said. “I’ve never been over terrain like that before.”
“Oh! That makes me feel really confident about it!” Kilee said with a slight quiver in her voice.
Before I spent too much time thinking about it, my right foot slowly pushed the accelerator petal down in a measured, deliberate manner. We began to crawl forward and up.
“Are we going to roll over doing this?” Kilee called out above the engine noise.
I didn’t answer. I simply kept the machine on a steady ascent right through the most challenging aspect.
“Can you believe what this machine can do?” I said while briefly looking at Kilee.
“It’s amazing!” she said with her eyes looking at the rocks just ahead.
The rest of our climb up the boulder-strewn trail was not as thrilling in the same way. It was beautiful though! When we made it to the end of the trail at the Deseret Peak Wilderness Area boundary, we looked at each other and smiled. We shared a feeling of accomplishment, having done something fun and worthwhile together. Then we started to make our way back down.
While en route, I was a little worried about the seemingly impossible angles we both knew were not far away.
“You get to sit on the scary side this time,” I said as we neared that part of the trail.
Kilee just looked over at me and said wryly, “Oh. Thanks!”
When we got to the spot, I saw it from a different angle. It wasn’t nearly as frightening from this new vantage point and we drive right through it with ease.
“You know, when you look at a problem you’re facing from different angles, it reveals hidden opportunity,” I said afterward.
“That’s exactly right!” Kilee said as we continued our descent.
“It was a morning made for climbing up the Stansbury Mountains with the sun!” I said to myself as we pulled back onto the blacktopped road to finish our little adventure.
We were both excited to rediscover that facing problems with impossible angles while traveling on the road of life, can be dealt with more successfully by taking the time to change one’s view and approach.
It reveals once hidden opportunity.
Lynn Butterfield lives in Erda and is a managing broker for a real estate company.