In addition to the labor of love, there were ever-expanding views, and I paused to ponder.
The lower world fell away until it was no longer recognizable as a place of cities, cars, churches,
bases, bombs, bands, boats, pets, plazas, paintings or other people-made things.
The human world diminished, and the land took over. What I looked down on was simply Earth–
the land of sunrise, sunset, sky, air, rocks, roots, rain, soil, snow, clouds, couloirs, trees,
lightning, thunder, volcanoes, mountains, shores, slabs, tides, water, sand, ice, storms, rivers,
washes, avalanches, fog, forests, animals, people and all things God made.
We are part of the Earth, but just one small part.
Since I was alone at the moment, I felt like I was the only human on the planet.
With each upward step, this feeling increased.
– Gerry Roach - From Transcendent Summits - Orizaba 1959
|Located in east central Mexico, Orizaba is Mexico’s highest peak
and the third highest peak in North America. Orizaba also has the
distinction of being the highest peak in the world between 10 and 20
degrees north latitude. The Aztecs called Orizaba Citlaltepetyl, and
early explorers saw the great peak from the ocean near Veracruz.
I have climbed Orizaba six times, once in each of six different decades:
the 1950s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000s. This is a string I plan to continue
as long as I can muster myself up there.