Thunderstorm Adventure with the Boys of Thunder

Here’s the story behind the video.

Dairian, Lazarus, and I wanted to go on a hike to Dalton Lake so that Dairian could fish. It was a long hike, 3.5 miles each way, but I felt confident that they were up to the task. There was a thunderstorm forecast for the afternoon, so I had planned to leave early.

We didn’t leave early. Doh. We left 2 hours late instead!

I talked to the boys. “Do you still want to go? We may get really wet and may have to wait out a storm if we get stuck in it?”

“Yes, we want to go!”

I made a decision and decided to go for it. I was determined to hike the pull path, too, which I had never fully accomplished. It’s a beautiful and fun hike right next to a creek.

We took off. And all was going well until about 3 miles in, when I noticed something bad. The inside parts — the guts — had fallen out of my key fob somewhere along the way! All that was left was the plastic shell. Uh oh! That’s not good! I told the boys of our predicament. I had no cell service, so I couldn’t call anyone about it just yet. We would need to have someone come and get us when we returned back to the vehicle.

The rains started. It wasn’t bad at first. The light shower felt good. We were welcoming it. 30 minutes later, we were arriving at the lake. Dairian was so excited! We had made it! He cast his line just 2 times before… LOUD, LOUD, LOUD clasps of thunder started resounding through the canyon. We all jumped. Including our 2 dogs, who were along for the adventure. And then, the rain POURED down. I mean fast and hard!

Thankfully, there was a nearby shelter we were able to find some good refuge in. We were drenched, and Lazarus wasn’t too found of all of the loud thunderclaps either. He was scared. I picked him up in my arms to calm him and Dairian said, “We should pray.” I agreed.

We prayed for the storm to die down, for peace to calm Lazarus’s little heart, and for a quick and safe return to our vehicle. Shortly after that a large group of ATVs came roaring into the shelter area. One by one the drivers got off their vehicles and a couple of them started making their way towards the restroom, which was near where we were standing. Several ladies commented on our wet pooches. But then, one of them saw Lazarus, who still looked scared, and said, “Poor kiddo!” It wasn’t long after that, another from the group came up to me and said, “Would you let us help you get back to the trailhead?”

I looked at my wet boys and dogs and replied, “That would be wonderful, Ma’am.”

It took them a while to rearrange all their stuff, but eventually, three of the side-by-sides were ready to drive us as close to the trailhead as they could get us. Each of us was in a seperate vehicle with our own driver. I mean, a hike and ATV’s in one day? How exciting! They took us, in a roundabout way (about 4 miles distance), closer to our trailhead location — as far as the muddy backroads would allow them to go.

I tried to give each of the gentlemen cash for their significant time and gas, but all three refused. In fact, instead of us giving them anything, they insisted that Lazarus keep the blanket they had wrapped him in for the ATV ride. Wow!

The long, steep hill up to Piedmont was too muddy for the ATVs to risk getting stuck, so they stopped there and let us get off the vehicles. We were just about a mile from Piedmont. A quick hike. Oh! And we had cell service, now, too!

I realized, as we were getting off of the ATV’s, that the rain had stopped, and that God had provided us “angel” transportation. I quickly stated as much to Lazarus, and he said, “God answered our prayer!”

I got my phone out to make a call to Dad to let him know of our situation and see if he’d be able to come to our rescue. I was on the phone with him when I saw Dairian, out of the corner of my eye, biff it face-first, in the muddy hill we were trying to ascend. Lazarus was close by and had frozen in his tracks, afraid of the same thing happening to him. I told Dad, “I’ll call you back.” Dairian fell again two more times before I was able to get both him and Lazarus off the slippy, muddy road and onto the side-brush.

We continued uphill in the brush until we made it to the top of the hill. By that time we were all laughing at ourselves. We had been drenched, dried off again by the ATV ride, and now Dairian was covered head-to-toe in mud! The rest of us were pretty muddy, too — just not as completely covered as Dairian.

I called Dad back and explained to him where we were coming into Piedmont. He drove over and met us. We covered his clean vehicle with towels in hopes of not getting it too messy. We then had to run into town to get my extra key, and come all the way back out to Piedmont again to get our vehicle. By the time we got home, we were plenty tired. But what an adventure that we will never, ever forget!

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