Dave Story: Mountain Side Encounter
Dave Carlson - July 17, 2005
If I ever write an auto-biography, this story most likely will be there. It is a story about my life I thought you might find interesting. Many times when I tell my stories, people say, “You should write a book about that.” So, here’s a start…
1980 Colorado -- One sunny warm fall afternoon I was climbing in the mountains of Fort Carson, Colorado. I was climbing the face of a favorite cliff, as I had done many times in the past. It was a familiar and easy climb. There were many solid hand and footholds without any over-hanging surfaces.
I was climbing without safety equipment that day since it was an easy and very safe place to climb. I was about 50 feet up the 75-foot high rock face when I reached high with my left hand and placed it into a solid hole in the rock. I pulled a little on the edge of the hole to ensure I had a firm grip on a solid surface. When I was confident I had a good hold, I pulled myself up and reached toward the next grip with my right hand.
As my eyes cleared the edge of the location where I had placed my left hand I saw what seemed like hundreds of details in an instant. I remember the hole in the rock face was about a foot wide, six inches high and about six inches deep. I also remember the bottom of the mini-ledge was covered with small rocks and grains of sand. But what is most burned into my memory is what I saw about one inch from my nose -- a small, but ominous-looking long scorpion!
I’m certain the next events occurred within a split second of my encounter, but at the time it seemed like I was hanging on that rock and looking at that huge tail stinger for over an hour. Fortunately, nothing happened. I continued my climb without further excitement. My mountain nemesis and I never met again.