I slog up the moraine, my snowshoes biting deep into the powder snow. Generations ago a glacier churned its way out of the mountains, carving out the bowl of Wallowa Lake and leaving this high lonesome plateau in its wake.
The trees are heavy with unshed snow.
The deep canyons, grooves in the bedrock left from the glacier's passage, are shrouded in clouds. Back there, frozen lakes dream under the weight of the ice.
The lake is sandwiched between two moraines running north and south. They stretch the lake between them, remnants of the rock and soil picked up and bulldozed by the glacier as it travelled slowly through the landscape. You can see the history of how it moved, a moment frozen in time.
I wonder for a time how I ended up here, from high desert to coastal rainforest, from southern swamp to Rocky Mountain. What bends in my life, like bends of a river, conspired to bring me here after years of wandering? Each eddy, each backwater, added up to me standing here, right now, on the back of what was carried here by a glacier. Forces stronger than I can imagine shaped this place. I am growing to see its story.