A Life Changing Climb

Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.


Standing atop the highest peak in the continental United States, the thin, crisp air and spectacular beauty of Mt. Whitney’s crest energized and humbled me. I could hear my heart beating, the individual rocks crunching beneath my feet, and the smooth whistle of wind blowing across my face. The expanding view of jagged mountains cascading toward the horizon left me awestruck. I was in California to seek out new adventure and bond with my father; little did I know that this journey would change my life immensely.

It was a cool summer morning when my father and I began our journey. Ahead of us was a seemingly endless twenty-two mile round-trip hike. Slowly and steadily, our expedition began with full spirits and excitement. I tend to try and find meaning in everything, so I quickly began thinking about what could be gained from this experience. With towering pine trees and rushing creek beds surrounding us, it led me to think about nature’s beauty and how easily we can take the special place we all live in for granted. Moving forward, I took in the rays sunlight and pure bliss of disconnection from society. We had no cell service, no screens, and no communication with the rest of the world. It was simply me, my dad, and my...

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