“Although I deeply love oceans, deserts and other wild landscapes,
it is only mountains that beckon me
with that sort of painful magnetic pull
to walk deeper and deeper into their beauty.” –Victoria Erickson
The words of Victoria Erickson beautifully express how it feels when I stand and gaze at the incredible mountains throughout Colorado. For as long as I can remember, I have loved the outdoors and exploring the wild landscapes that fill this beautiful country. I have always been captivated by the magic of the ocean and hikes that take me along wooded paths where I can be alone with nature. My childhood was filled with magical places where I could explore and live in my own secret world that my imagination cradled me in. But the mountains have always called to me in a way unlike any other place, and in particular, the mountains out west.
I have always said that when I travel to Arizona, I feel like I am coming home . . . and I believe it was my home before. However, when I am in Colorado, my Spirit feels drawn to stay. Perhaps this is the direction my journey with my family is heading toward in the future. I cannot adequately express in words, the pull these mountains have on me. There is such peace and strength to be among them and such desire to walk deeper into them and find the magic that awaits.
Where my words fail me, I hope my images will convey to you how it feels to be within the magical arms of these giants. May you see them in the same way I see them through the world of my camera lens.
Highlighted in part-two of my Colorado blog series, you will find images of Floating Lake. To find this magical place, you must ascend more than 1,000 feet up a steep, rocky, narrow path in a mountainside. The hike is not without effort but you’re rewarded at the top with an amazing view looking out, as well as a small, clear-green watering hole that is fed by a series of small waterfalls. The water is simply beautiful but must remain untouched by humans, as our lotions, skin follicles, etc, will change the purity of the water and the color.
You will also find images of our trek through Rocky Mountain National Park. Wow. Stunning. Majestic. Literally breath-taking at an elevation of more than 12,000 feet! Along the drive, we stopped and BBQ’d alongside a creek, surrounded by the mountains. We saw elk, mountain goats, marmots and snow-covered peaks. Looking up at these mountains, you realize how small you are in life and you feel the need to let go of all the trivial thoughts that float around your head, taking up space . . . and you just breathe. You can just be present right there, in that moment.
Our Native American elders continue to remind us of the importance of reconnecting with nature . . . re-wilding our Spirits. They are wise and their words speak truth. If we lose our connection to nature, we eventually lose ourselves. These mountains are a beautiful reminder to disconnect from technology and reconnect to ourselves and each other.
“We’re sitting on our blessed Mother Earth from which we get our strength and determination, love and humility – All the beautiful attributes that we’ve been given. So turn to one another, love one another, respect one another, respect Mother Earth, respect the waters. . . because that’s life itself.” –Phil Lane, Sr., Yankton Sioux