Mountains: the peace and the glory

– the view from the deck at Wild Bird

The mountains quake before him
    and the hills melt away.
The earth trembles at his presence,
    the world and all who live in it.

Nahum 1:5
– Mountains!!!!

If you typed “mountains” into my search field the list of results would probably cover several pages. Everything from epic ascents such as Sinai or Vesuvius, to getting an assist from the train that goes up Mt. Washington. Then – like Ben Nevis, Mt, Snowdon, the Eiger, and my 500-mile Appalachian hike in 1976 – there are so many from the days before my interest in photography, let alone the existence of the Internet or my personal blog.

I just love the mountains, and last week I could have got away with posting 25 photos all taken from the same spot, relaxing on the deck behind the vacation house at Wild Bird. I came close to saying “No, thank you” to all the side trips and waterfalls and barbecue sandwiches and craft breweries, just so that I could sit in an easy chair and watch the view change.

It’s not so much that I could move a mountain, but that the mountains could – and always do – move me.

– there’s a rainbow if you look closely….

Sunrise; in the mist; above the clouds; clear skies; sunset; muted rainy day vistas; silver-lined clouds; changes in the light. Then a dozen variations of each of these conditions. This is what taking in the view is all about. More point of view than viewing point. More state of mind – state of heart, state of soul – than looking through a lens.

But I didn’t stay on the deck all day. I gladly accepted any and all trip ideas and the waterfalls too overwhelmed me in their own way (see yesterday’s post: Waterfalls as Art…).

But the mountains did still call to me, from every road we traversed. Maybe it is the unshakable substance of them; maybe it is the, “I lift my eyes unto the hills;” maybe it is the gravity and the history and the stories these mountains could tell (and do).

Here are a handful of inspirational mountain views from our brief respite in Western North Carolina. Just take a deep breath and say “thank you” to the Creator. – DEREK

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