The sky of Chinese dragon clouds and turquoise created an interesting patchwork of light and shadow across the tundra. It caused the temperature to yo-yo, which is to be expected at twelve-thousand four-hundred. Upon Mount Bierstadt and the ominous Sawtooth, there was the thinnest layer of new snow. A given; it's been cooler at night down at ninety-one sixty, so, of course, at fourteen-thousand-sixty-five any precipitation that might fall would freeze.
There was concern we'd get rained out like the last time. Were I given to preying in any other context than the food chain, I might have asked the Long Wang, the Chinese Dragon Kings, the Lords of Rains and Funerals, to spare us the rains whilst we were up. I do not prey unless it's in the context of the food chain, and asking favors of dragons can be a deadly and dangerous proposition.
We re-explored the ruins and trekked to another set further up the bowl. Something to do. It really was a pleasant day up on the tundra. I gritted my teeth when the pristine Backcountry silence was broken by someone firing guns.
"Nice ordinance," I muttered. "Sorry about your dick."
Our first hour was exploring and chatting amongst ourselves. Watching a wolf-hybrid frolic amongst the willows, chasing marmots and chipmunks, but never having a chance of catching one. Then we heard the roars of distant engines across the tundra.
This time, there was thirty people altogether, one hail storm, and an otherwise fun time. We came back down feeling more accomplished than the last time. Due diligence.
Coming home, we laughed at the eastbound tourist traffic. I didn't laugh as hard, because, whatever my feelings toward that ilk, they do put food in my belly. The penance of living where others come to vacation.
It was observed the slate and black over the ridge line of where we had been. Chances were, the dragons came and sky opened up. I would joke that my prayers were answered, but I only prey in the context of the food chain.
Besides, who would want to answer the joked prayers of a heretical Tibetan Buddhist who drinks beer, chugs wine, and swills whiskey anyway?