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Places of Power, Places of Heart
On Mt. Tamalpais

Cataract Falls - Healing Waters
The fourth in a series of ceremonial hikes

Saturday, February 13th
9:30 AM - 3:30 PM

 
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Healing Waters


The rains have come, the earth is soaking it in, and I hope you are too!  This hike will focus on Healing Waters--both how they heal us, and how we can help to heal them.  We will visit Cataract Falls and experience the silvery magic in her crashing spray, recognize and receive the healing presence in the white water, and then spiral up to a knob that overlooks the watershed to bless and heal the waters:  below the earth, in the cataracts and lake below, all the way to the Ocean beyond the ridge. 


On this hike, you will:

-Descend from the windy ridge to the sleepy creek bed
-Feel the alive stillness of your winter heart
-Follow Cataract Creek through a damp winter meadow and dell
-Absorb the green life emanating from the rejuvenating woods
-Come to the edge as the flow turns downhill
-Let your heart begin to open and flow
-Step down to the crashing foot of Cataract Falls
-Receive the healing silver spirit in the roar of the water
-Spiral up to the bare knoll that commands a view above all the creek's cataracts as they rush down to Alpine Lake below, and out to our Ocean Mother beyond
-Give back and participate in a healing for the waters of the Earth.

To read in more detail about the vision I received in my preparation journey, click here.

In  our previous hikes, we have walked from the earth of the Medicine Wheel, to the Ocean water connection of the Stone Rings, climbed to touch the fire of our ancestors on the Journey Stone near the Peak, and now we come to the Healing Waters.  According to the Medicine Wheel and the Directions, we are in a cycle of air that is experienced in the wind and the spray of falling water.  According to other traditions, we are in the quiet, deep wet of winter, where everything is still, things gather for new beginnings, where seeds sleep, waiting to be awakened in the spring.  It is a time for internal healings and setting the foundations of new beginnings.  This is what we will do for ourselves and the waters on this hike.

Rating the difficulty of our hikes on a scale of 1-10, 1 being very level, short and easy, and 10 being very strenuous, our first three hikes rated 1-2.  I rate this one about a 4. 

This hike is 3 miles round trip, begins going downhill, later involves two gradual climbs of 250 feet in elevation, and requires going up and down about 100 steps set into the hillside beside the falls. (There are a series of falls and cataracts below the main falls that you can explore if you wish, time allowing.  These proceed in a series of drops all the way to Alpine Lake, a thousand feet and 1.5 miles below.)  You will huff and puff a bit, but you can rest and take the time you need.  Ferns and grasses, moss and huckleberry, firs, oaks and bay trees will line our way.  The footing is good and solid, but there may be rain, so sturdy boots or shoes with good traction are a necessity.  We will be in the open or under trees the whole time, so raingear is a must.  A raincoat with a waterproof hat or hood may be required, and rain pants are advised for your comfort and warmth.  (You could conceivably carry an umbrella, although I don't prefer them; they're a little awkward in the woods.)

We will do the hike and water healing work, rain or shine.  The spirits appreciate our willingness to sacrifice a little personal comfort, and the water spirits will be all the more cooperative and engaging under these conditions.  I have spent hours standing in the rain, journeying and communing to do healing work for the mountain, and you just might be surprised at how warmly you are held, and how quickly the time passes.  The falls and creeks are viewable in their full splendor only during the rainy season, and especially just after or during rainfall.  So do not be intimidated. Come prepared and this will be an experience you will treasure! (And the spirits will bless and thank you for it!)

Details on logistics will be sent upon registration.  For more detail of the journey vision, what we are being drawn to do and who will help, click here.



$40 ($35 if registered by February 8th)



For forty years, Steve has been doing ceremony and hiking around the shoulders of our local mother-mountain.  On these visits to Mt. Tam, we will hike with mindfulness to key power spots, many secret or hidden from casual view.  There, we will bond with the presence of the mountain, perform ceremony, make offerings and honor the local spirits.  We will connect with the power and heart of the land, and with each other, heart to heart.

Steve Orsary
is a shamanic practitioner, healer and poet who has hiked thousands of miles, many of them around Mt. Tam where he has walked every trail on the map and many that aren't. He and his wife, MaryAnn, work in Corte Madera where they practice Bioenergy Balancing, shamanic healing and body-centered psychotherapy.  Read more about Steve.


Click to contact Steve.  Limited to 12 participants.  Feel free to send info about this hike to anyone who might be interested.