The Climb… segments 5-6-7

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The story of George the old hunter continues … trapped in a blizzard… while hunting in the mountains….  

The cave extended back about eight feet, with a ceiling only around four feet high. It was just wide enough so that George could comfortably turn around and stretch out in. Now that he had stopped moving the chill began to set in on him. He was glad for his hooded hunting jacket that offered some comfort, but not enough to feel warm. The evaporating sweat from his climb down the mountain only served to chill him even more.

Darkness was setting in as the snow continued to fall gently creating a wonderful world of white. George knew he must work quickly to get settled for the long night ahead. He had several matches, but they would not provide any lasting light. He took out his last granola bar and ate only half of it, although his stomach was empty and growling. He did the same with his last bottle of water. He knew he would need the rest in the morning for his journey back to his truck in the valley below.

A cold chill was coming through his jeans. George decided to pile the dry leaves in the cave over his legs to help insulate them just a little. Exhausted from his climb down the mountain, so he propped his 30-30 against the back of the cave and tried to get as comfortable as possible. It wasn’t long untill he drifted off to sleep.


As the winter storm outside continued, George slept fitfully. His dreams came and went, some leaving him very unsettled. Just as he drifted off once more, he heard a frightful scream in the distance beyond the hollow. Immediately he recognized that sound as a mountain lion. They roamed these mountains and were usually illusive of people. Unless cornered, they kept their distance.

Thoughts raced through George’s mind. The sound was not far away; and from what George could tell, it was moving closer. He wondered if the mountain lion was also looking for his cave to find shelter from the storm. He sat up, took the safety off his rifle and laid his 30-30 across his lap.

He could not see much in the dark, although the snow offered a shadow of light at the mouth of the cave. Chills of a different kind ran up and down George’s spine, as the guttural sounds of the mountain lion came closer and closer to the mouth of the cave. George knew he had no choice, so propping his elbows on his knees he brought the 30-30 to his shoulder and waited.


George could now hear the heavy breathing of the creature outside his cave. He checked to make sure his gun was ready. The cat stopped just beyond the entrance. Was she picking up George’s scent from inside the cave? He could hear her creeping forward on the snow covered ground.

George knew this was it. With his finger on the trigger he kept his eyes focused on the dim light at cave opening! The mountain lion’s head obscured the light at the cave entrance. She gave a loud snarl when she saw George in her den. George held his breath and squeezed the trigger. There was a deafening boom from the rifle!

George woke with a start in a cold sweat! It seemed so real. He checked, and his 30-30 was still standing propped against the cave wall. As he looked towards the entrance George could see all was quiet as the snow gently fell all around.

To be continued

For the beginning of the story scroll down through the blog page to the previous posts on The Climb or click below:

For a free pdf. file copy of the whole story, email me at:

38 thoughts on “The Climb… segments 5-6-7

  1. Suspenseful! The dream twist was surprising. Engaging and entertaining, Dwight. I have been very close to bobcats, which don’t concern me (too much), but mountain lions are another story. Never too concerned to not hike, but one must be aware, or be able to run very very fast! 😱

    Liked by 1 person

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