Montani semper liberi!
Every couple of years, the mountains call me. Actually, they call me quite a bit more often, but the constraints of time and money require me to silence their beckoning until it becomes so loud I can no longer ignore it... this happens about once every couple years.
Few things a man can do can put life into perspective like strapping a pack on his back and charging out into the wilderness alone or with a couple of friends. I'm blessed that my wife tolerates these excursions, most likely because she knows what an intolerable bastard I would be if I weren't able to recharge myself in the mountains every now and then.
This last summer I was fortunate enough to be able to take my sons with me for their first "big" trip... nine days in Colorado. The feeling of setting up our high camp around 11,400 feet or so, at the very top of a beautiful mountain basin, and being able to share my love for the wilderness with my boys is something I'll never forget. No matter how special the mountains were to me before, their value to me increased tenfold upon watching my sons learn to love the high places the way I do.
"Keep close to Nature's heart... and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean." - John Muir