There Is A Trail Up In The Rocky Mountains That You Should Never Hike, And For Good Reason

Ezra looked up over to the mountains on the dewy horizon with glassy eyes.

“I always heard the McCords buried that old man up there in a valley way up in those mountains in an old family graveyard. I heard they buried most of his fortune in gold right up there with him in that cold ol box. Cemetery’s supposed to be almost impossible to find and a hard as hell climb, but his bones are still supposed to be up there with all that gold. I’ve always wanted to see if I could get up there and find it. Make me a killing. Give it to my granddaughter over in Salt Lake. This might be my last chance.”

Ezra looked over to me with those same glassy eyes.

“You have any interest in trying to get an old man a little gold before he dies ranch hand?”


I couldn’t believe I was actually doing it until I walked out of my apartment with my heavy pack of supplies lashed to my back. The cold of the morning tried to convince me to head back inside and spend the weekend watching Netflix in the warmth of my place, but the look upon Ezra’s face and the romantic notion of chasing gold up in the ancient valleys and peaks of the Rockies intoxicated my 25-year-old brain.

I was to meet Ezra at the start of the Granite Mountain trail just a stone’s throw from the museum. I prayed not to run into anyone as Ezra and I were calling in sick to leave Friday morning and have time to get to the cemetery and get back down by nightfall on Sunday.

A chuckle shot out of me when I arrived at the trailhead to see Ezra wearing just a t-shirt underneath some Carhartt overalls and a knit hat with a small backpack even though the temperature was around 40 degrees. He returned a laugh when he saw me lumbering over with my huge pack towering over my shoulders.

“What you got in there on your back? A five-star hotel?”

“Tent, food, clothes, some mountain climbing gear in case we need it.”

“Well, you are prepared if you are anything. If it was just me I would just haul my dying ass up there with some chew, sunflower seeds and a Hustler.”

We shared a laugh before Ezra led me to the trailhead and we slipped into the darkness of the cold forest.


About the author

Jack Follman

Jack has written professionally as a journalist, fiction writer, and ghost writer. For more information, visit his website.

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