Towards Y2K9 (4): Mountains And Rivers Without End

We started our last Seattle day picking up Ted, Letha, and Tallulah at their beautiful house – Sabine held Tallulah for a few minutes which turned out to be an interesting experience for both of them 🙂

We had a fabulous breakfast at Geraldine’s together …

… before setting out north and then west towards the Olympic National Park which was our next destination.

We arrived in a small town called Port Angeles, dropped our luggage, and drove straight up the mountains towards a place with the promising name Hurricane Ridge. After the sunny days in Seattle we were a little disappointed to see clouds pile up in the mountains, and we expected low visibility.

We were all the more delighted to find that once our car had climbed through the clouds and forests with huge trees, we suddenly could see for miles and miles, like in the Pete Townshend song.

Being up on a high mountain is something special (even if you went there by car, and even if you just have a few hours to spend there). It touched my heart. The light up there was different, very bright and clear, and once we were on a trail away from the people, there was that timeless silence that is at the center of everything.

Of course I was reminded of my all-time hero poet Gary Snyder who had spent much time on mountains like this.

Down valley a smoke haze
Three days heat, after five days rain
Pitch glows on the fir-cones
Across rocks and meadows
Swarms of new flies.

I cannot remember things I once read
A few friends, but they are in cities.
Drinking cold snow-water from a tin cup
Looking down for miles
Through high still air.

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