From a high mountain trail, through a break in the trees, I looked to see waterfall on the far side of the canyon. I stared at it for a while, and made plans to find out where it was, and how to get there.
But the waterfall was not listed on any of my maps, and no signs led to it. All I could do was figure out it was somewhere just north of Kirkwood Lake.
So on a sunny Saturday, I drove to the lake, and happened to meet a retired hippy couple (he looked like Jerry Garcia) about to launch a canoe. I asked if they knew how to get back to the waterfall, and they told me of a trail that started not too far away. I would never have found it on my own, for it was not marked, and indeed, not really a trail; just a way through the brush and boulders.
But soon I found myself at the nameless waterfall, alone in one of the most beautiful spots I had seen.
The upper falls dropped 15 feet or so into a lovely pool.
Below this, the surging water had cut wonderful formations in the stone.
My favorite part was a stone staircase the water coursed down. I sat on a rock in the middle and just soaked in the beauty.
In all, I spent three hours at the falls. I prayed, worshipped, and simply wondered at the beauty and serenity of the place. I wondered more that the God who made this actually cared about me.
During those hours, no other soul came anywhere close to the stream. From the looks of it, few even knew of it. Perhaps in a place like the Tahoe region, other, showier places attract all the attention. But for me, this was the most beautiful. I had seen large waterfalls in Yellowstone and other places, some plunging hundreds of feet down. But this place had a nameless grace, an ineffable beauty that surpassed them all, at least to me.
I was reminded of another source of grace and beauty that God had brought into my life, and this for not three hours, but for almost thirty years. Her name is Amy, and through those years I have grown more intoxicated with her loveliness.
I suppose that she will never grace a magazine cover or be part of some calendar of models, any more than the waterfalls I found that day will make the National Geographic. But to me she is the most beautiful and graceful woman in the world. She has a loveliness that goes beyond my ability to put into words: an nameless grace, an ineffable beauty. She has grown into a person not only pretty to look at, but one lovely in her love towards others. I rejoice that God gives me eyes to see it more and more.
As far as I know, the falls above Kirkwood Lake are yet un-named. So in Amy’s honor I would like to christen it with the following title: Hidden Beauty Falls.