THE RACE IS NOT TO THE SWIFT NOR THE BATTLE TO
"24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all,
but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is
temperate in all things. "
New Testament, 1 Corinthians 9:24 -
"and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,"
New Testament, Hebrews 12:1
"Wherefore, if ye shall be obedient to the commandments, and endure
to the end, ye shall be saved at the last day. And thus it is.
Book of Mormon, 1 Nephi 22:31
In the race of life there are many things to be
considered. We not only need to endure to the end and finish the race
but we must also finish the race with honor and carry with us the
necessary equipment and knowledge in order to win the race. We are
only competing with ourselves so nothing is acceptable if it is not
the best we have or the best that we can do.
When I was teaching in the Academy in Juarez Dean
Turley was also teaching then. We got together and decided to take our
oldest sons on a fishing trip into the Sierra Madre Mountains. We had
a three day holiday coming up so we prepared for those days to go on
the wonderful outing with our Boys. We decided that we would go clear
over to the distant Metate Canyon where the fishing is really
The day came and Kiko and I were all packed up and left
very early in the morning and went to Juarez and picked up Dean and
his son Dee. We traveled up the mountain and through Hop Valley and on
to Garcia. From there we took the good road to where we connected to
the road from Mound Valley to the Colorado. We stopped at the little
store in Colorado and bought some candy and sweet breads for lunch.
From there we went up past Bull Peak and went down the long ridge that
is called la Lonja. To where we left the Van just above the El Rey
Ranch. It was late in the afternoon so we walked down to the Ranch and
arranged for the animals for the trip. The next morning just as the
sun came up we finished our breakfast and were all packed up and our
mounts saddled and ready to go. We packed old Patty since she was the
only one that was a good pack mule besides being a very good saddle
We eagerly set off for a good long ride. We went south
through the San Carlos Ranch and on across the Chuhuichupa River. We
followed the trail around the side of the Huerfano and dropped into
Black canyon just below our old campsite at the Airport. We crossed
the Negro and took the trail up past the little spring in the cave
called Los ojos de Maria. We all piled off and had a good cold drink
of sweet mountain water. Each took turns filling the can that was
always there by catching the drops of water that came out of the rock
like tears falling into the can.
From there we went up over the Puerto del Apache and
traveled down the fault where the trail could no longer be seen
because it was overgrown with grass. It was getting late in the
afternoon and in our hurry we passed the place where we should have
turned up out of the fault to find the trail along the high ridge. The
fault became rough and many fallen trees and brush hedged up our way
finally we decided to retrace our trail and find the way up onto the
ridge. We found our way up and hit the trail along the ridge and down
into the Pedernal. We past the abandoned cabin and went on to a
beautiful camping spot beside the Meatate Creek. It was getting dark
as we unpacked and hobbled out the animals with a couple of bells on
them. We set up a nice camp and had a good supper. We sat around the
fire for awhile just enjoying the peace of this beautiful place. We
had come a long ways but now we were here and content with the long
The next morning just as it was getting light in the
east we were all up and eager to go catch some Rainbow Trout for our
breakfast. This was what we had come for and we were all eagerly
preparing our fishing gear. When I went for the can of worms that I
had dug and filled at home I could not find it. I had a sinking
feeling as I remembered that I had left that can of worms on the porch
at home to be loaded in a safe place the last minute. The can of worms
was not loaded into the pack boxes so we were here without any worms.
We were all very disappointed and went to see if we could find some
worms or grasshoppers of anything to fish with. After about an hour of
searching in vain we decided that we had better get on our way back
home. It was Saturday and we had to be home that night.
We came back at a steady pace the animals were eager
because they were going home and we made good time. We unpacked and
loaded the van. Our journey home was long but we made good time and
arrived home about eleven O'Clock that night.
We had been on a wonderful trip through some beautiful
Sierra Madre Mountains and had a good ride and a pleasant camp but we
had that little feeling of failure because we had not gotten to fish.
We went to our destination but we did not accomplish our goal I hope
that when my time comes and I reach my destination that I will be
prepared with all I need to accomplish my goal. I hope that I will not
have to say, "If only I had put in the worms".
For many years I worked with the Explorer Scouts here
in Dublan. Our program at that time was centered around the camping
skills and camping merit badges. Our goal was to help the boys pass
their Merit Badges and learn as much as they could in the Scouting
Program. Most of the boys enjoyed passing the different Merit Badges
and progressing in their scouting. Some set their goal to become Eagle
Scouts. Others were just enjoying the program and learning the skills
and enjoying the social part of the program. They passed the Merit
Badges right along with the rest of the group and even doing a better
job than those whose goal was to get the requirements done so they
could receive the honor of becoming an Eagle Scout.
Those that fulfilled every detail of the requirements
received their Eagle badge and joined the ranks of the world wide
eagle scouts. Some of the other boys almost finished all of the
requirements and only lacked a few details to finish up. Through
procrastination and not caring let the time go by and did not receive
their Eagle Scout award. They had the knowledge and the skills but
lacked the recognition that the Eagle Badge offers. They will always
have to say I almost got my Eagle but I lacked this little detail to
finish up. They ran the race well. They enjoyed all of the benefits of
the whole program but didn't quite finish up so they did not get the
title or the Badge. They could not put on their list of
accomplishments that they were an Eagle Scout.
Society and businesses seem to give credit and honor to
that title just as they give credit and honor to a College degree. One
who has all of the credits necessary to graduate but lacks some minor
details to finish up cannot receive that Degree which counts in our
society. When applying for a Job they do not ask for your
qualifications they ask if you have the Degree showing that you have
finished the race and won the honor.
A person that is a good teacher and has had lots of
experience teaching cannot receive the same salary as the person that
has the Degree and the Teachers Certificate. They might even be a
better teacher than the one with the Title but that is not what counts
in our Society. A Doctor cannot practice without his Certificate. So
let us run so that we may OBTAIN and have with us all that we need to
obtain our goal and win the race of life.
We will encounter obstacles that must be overcome but
that is part of the race to overcome every obstacle and difficulty and
obtain our goal.
Ray Wood and Doug Brown came down and talked to me
about organizing a Company to be called Sierra Madre Expeditions. The
wanted me to take them on a trip to see the country and be able to
advertise about the fishing, the cave dwellings, scenery and other
attractions. They wanted to experience a pack trip into the Sierra
Madre to be able to advertise the Mule Pack Trips. I told them that I
would take them up to Trout Creek where our family had been going
every year for about 25 years.
We packed up the van and drove for six hours through
the Sierra Madre to our base camp where we had our Animals waiting for
us to use. On the way I told them many stories and experiences about
the different places along the way. We arrived about noon and found
the animals that we would need. They were very interested in the
Process of packing up all of our camp gear and food onto the Pack
mules. They were interested in my Aparejos and equipment and were
pleased with the whole experience.
We traveled down the old familiar trail to trout Creek
enjoying the beautiful country along the trail. We arrived at Trout
Creek about sundown. To my great surprise the trail across the Creek
had been blocked off with the giant oaks that had been cut down and
placed as a fence. I looked through the branches and saw the whole
area was filled with beautiful Poppies all in bloom all along the
Canyon. I climbed up on a little promontory point and as far as I
could see upstream was filled with :Poppies. As far as I could see
down stream was filled those beautiful flowers. I could see near the
creek some gasoline motor pumps that were used to water that pretty
garden. I suddenly realized what I was seeing. This was a huge
plantation that the Mafia was using to raise their drugs and a very
dangerous place for us to be. Luckily It was sundown and all of the
workers had gone to their camps. We hurriedly gathered up our Pack
Mules and turned back to the Cebadilla. We were looking over our
shoulders and expecting to hear the whiz of bullets but none came. We
arrived back at our base camp in the darkness of a moonless night. It
was late so we unpacked the animals sent them to pasture. We rolled
down our beds in one of the abandoned cabins and went to sleep.
The next morning with the sunshine and the beautiful
day all of our apprehension of the night before vanished and we were
ready to continue a journey in another direction. We packed up and
took the old trail down to the Gavilan River. Ray Wood was leading one
of the new Pack mules. She suddenly jerked the lead rope out of his
hand and went bucking wildly past him down the steep trail to suddenly
stop on the very edge of a cliff where the trail turned sharply to the
right. She stood trembling and sweating until I came to repack her
pack that had turned over to one side in her bucking frenzy. We got
her all repacked and continued on down the trail without further
incident. We made a camp in a grassy place under a grove of beautiful
pines with the Gavelan River near by. I like to camp where we can hear
the water of the river running over the rocks.
After a good lunch we mounted up leaving our camp in
the charge of Brother Morales, and took the trail over the mountain to
the lower end of Trout Creek to catch some trout for supper. Ray and
Doug enjoyed the country and seeing the many terraces in the draws
along the way. They marveled at the size and height of some of those
more preserved terraces.
We arrived at the old Jenkins cabin where the trail
comes down into Trout creek at this point. To our satisfaction there
was no evidence of Poppy plantations here. We enjoyed fishing in the
cold clear stream and soon had enough Trout for Supper even though we
could see evidence of fisherman's fires along the stream where the
workers from the Poppy fields had come down this far to fish.
We got back to our camp about dusk and prepared a good
supper that included fresh Trout fried in butter. We sat around the
campfire talking and drinking my famous herb tea. The next day we
explored up and down the Gavilan and climbed up to the Campo Santo
(Indian Burial Ground). Ray was anxious to dig but I suggested he save
it for another trip. The next day we returned home having enjoyed a
successful trip. Ray and Doug returned home to Mesa Az. To write up
the advertisement and prepare a trip with two Sports writers from The
Phoenix and Tucson Papers.
We accomplished our goal in spite of being blocked out
of our special camp ground on Trout Creek. We have never been back and
only the memory remains of the many wonderful years of camping with
the family and many others in that Special camp on Trout Creek.
I hope this will inspire us all to finish the race and
run so that we can obtain our Heavenly Home and there say, "I have run
the race and have fought a good fight, I am content".