The subtitle for this book, “Everyone Has an Everest,” has been a mantra of Jim Klobuchar’s lifetime of exploring the power and spiritual treasure of wild nature. For Jim and for those who share his passions and curiosity about the high country, the winter wilderness and the open road, it goes beyond goal-setting and fundamentally becomes a search for an ultimate fullfillment. That search doesn’t necessarily define us. But it can lift us to a kind of peace within ourselves for having enlisted our energies and scanned our stars to achieve something worth the commitment, the energy and the risk. It can be true in our professional lives, in the idealization of our personal lives and in reaching for a summit.
Jim writes of the gifts that have come into his later life from his climbs in the Alps, Andes and Rockies and in his ventures in the Himalayas; from his years of cycling (including a memorable thousand mile ride to the Teton Mountains with his college-age daughter, now a U.S. Senator), hiking the forest trails in northern Minnesota and skiing along in the winter wilderness.
What he drew from those experiences 30 and 40 years ago, was not what he found later.
“The relationships changed,” he write. “Where I felt certain moments of triumph and exhilaration years ago–challenging nature, extracting thrills, reaching the summit–the rewards later changed into something quieter. The gifts I identify now became more durable ones. They brought into my life some extraordinary people and a kind of mentorship for me: Dorothy Molter who lived alone on an island, at peace with the woods and the wind and the animals and at ease with herself; Eddie Pizzarro, a Peruvian guide and a generous viewer of the human condition; a hundred more faces in my life, indelible. The gifts have included a deeper appreciation of our relationships with the earth where we travel, and not surprisingly, with the people the our lives.” Somebody asked, is there actually a heaven on earth?
It’s a fascinating idea, and it’s explored in this book So this is one man’s good earth. It has taken Jim Klobuchar into the Amazon rain forest and onto the Nile, to the Matterhorn, around Lake Superior on a bicycle and under three feet of ice on Lake Minnetonka.
In this book he offers an invitation. “The trail is open,” he says, “and there’s room for two.”
“Pieces of My Heart” is published by Nodin Press in Minneapolis. It is available at book stores, through Adventure Publications in Cambridge, MN, ph. 763-689-9800,www.adventurepublications.net, and through Amazon.com.