Rae Luxner of Houston, Texas tells us her story of how BumbleBar found her in a time of need. Tell us your BumbleBar Story!
On August 2nd of this year my sister and I arrived in Moab, UT after having driven the 19 hours from the Houston TX area. Her son and daughter (my niece and nephew) live in Moab and we were looking forward to participating in as many wonderful outdoor activities as we could during the 2 weeks we would be there. Since my nephew had to work the next day, my niece suggested that the 3 of us go for a hike in the mountains early that morning. The La Salle Mountains are unique to the area in that they are not part of any other mountain range but are completely self-contained. Moab sits in a very special area with fabulous rock formations, canyons, cliffs, desert, and then tree covered mountains less than 20 minutes away from each other. You can crack climb in the morning and hike in the forest in the evening without leaving home so to speak.
It was an absolutely gorgeous day with sapphire blue sky, no humidity which made the heat very tolerable especially having come from sea level and 100% humidity on a “cool” day. The drive into the mountains was so beautiful. Looking out the car windows there was Moab in the basin with the red rock ridge on one side and out the other window were pine trees and valleys. Just amazing.
We each had a backpack loaded with several quarts of water and fruit, nuts, and veggies for snacking. Plus sunscreen, chapstick and cell phones. However as we quickly learned the chances of getting a signal outside the city limits are pretty slim.
We entered a world of shade and green filtered sunlight, a myriad of bird songs, beautiful butterflies, and total peace. Not being in a big hurry to get anywhere we took the time to stop and drink as needed, have a little snack, sit and appreciate our surroundings. I should mention that at that time I was only 2-1/2 weeks away from my 65th birthday. I’m in pretty good shape but hiking is not something I get to do very often in Texas. My sister is 8 years younger than me and my niece who is 23 does this pretty much every day. So I was pacing myself and there were times they got ahead of me but I always caught up within 5 minutes or so. I was feeling very good.
Somewhere around 30 minutes into the hike we came across a very unusual sight. There were cows in the forest! The range cattle escape the heat and dryness of the flat lands and desert areas and retreat to the mountains for the summer. Now I have worked on 2 different dairy farms in Colorado but I never came across cows in the mountains. Hiking trails are narrow and when faced with 8-10 cows and young bulls the humans tend to yield the right-of-way. After having done that several times we came upon an absolutely wonderful sight: a grove of aspens around a crystal clear mountain stream complete with waterfall and flat rocks for resting. I was pretty hot and getting tired by then but after another drink, snack and a little rest I felt ready to continue. We went maybe another 1/2 mile and I started not feeling well, very hot, bit of a rapid heart beat, and a little light headed and clamy. I told them to go on ahead and that if I didn’t catch up not to worry because I was staying put.
Finding a comfortable rock in the shade I sipped my water slowly thinking I needed more hydrating. The palpitations were actually a little worse and my vision was getting tunneled like I was going to pass out whenever I tried to move back down the trail. I thought I had either heat exhaustion or heat stroke and knew I needed to get back down to the stream. I made it back down maybe 200 yards and not feeling well enough to go on I found a flat area of dirt under some scrub brush. My thought was to stay there until my sister and niece came back down as they would have to pass by me.
As I sat there and sipped my water, which by now was almost gone, I heard something very large coming through the underbrush. Cows! Not wanting to be in their way I actually crawled off the trail further under the bushes to get in the shade and out of their path. Now I was almost out of water and feeling very ill; I knew I was in real trouble. Unable to move except perhaps to have crawled down the trail I was laying down and actually moaning, practically in tears. At least an hour or more had gone by and I had no idea how long before my family would find me. Panic was setting in. I thought they would find me passed and out and have no way to get me down to the car. And then I heard what sounded like cows running and I remember thinking that they would not see me and end up running over me. Real panic now. But as fortune would have it was a couple of mountain bikers doing some training on the trail. The first rider came to an abrupt stop when she saw me and immediately asked if I was ok. All I could do was whimper. Next I knew I had hands helping me sit up, fresh water in my bottle and questions about my symptoms. She and her companion turned out to be Wilderness First Responders and knew immediately that I had altitude sickness and needed to get down to a lower level.
As it turned out where they found me was around 9,000 feet of elevation. Coming from sea level the day before and not allowing time to get adjusted, my body had reacted and revolted. But the absolute saving grace of the moment and the whole point of this story was that she had with her a Lushus Lemon Bumblebar which she fed to me one bite at a time with the admonition to chew all the seeds thoroughly. This was manna from heaven for my mouth and my body. Very shortly after eating about half a bar I felt strong enough to get up and, holding on to the back of her bike slowly made my way back down to the stream area. This took at least another 30-40 minutes. Her companion in the meantime had gone down the trail to their truck and brought it up closer with the intention of getting me off the mountain and back down to our car which was at about the 7,000 foot level. She met us at the stream and we were discussing the idea of leaving a note on my niece’s car and having my rescuers actually take me back to the house. These ladies were awesome. I had just agreed to let them do that when here came my niece followed shortly by my sister.
By this time I was feeling almost normal at the lower altitude and had eaten the second half of the Bumblebar. Happy ending: I made it back down the mountain under my own steam and stayed at 5,000 elevation for the next couple of days. By the time vacation was over we had done lots more hiking, ATV riding, and crack climbing. I conquered a 60′ rock face on only my 3rd climb ever! And you can be sure a Bumblebar was with me every time!