Pikes Peak

Pikes Peak
"Spacious Skies"

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Humming "Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold"


With thunderstorms comes mist and the mountains were misty and cold during and after the thunder and rain.  In fact, many times it was hail coming down on top of my head.  Several times I started humming the lyrics of the dwarves' song from The Hobbit  "Far Over the misty mountains cold".
Full lyrics to the dwarves’ song from chapter 1 of The Hobbit
Misty Mountains Cold lyrics

"Thunderclouds of Love" Sunset

Not all sunsets are brilliant colors of red and pink streaks in the sky.  There was a thunder storm everyday I was in the Rocky Mountains. I love being caught on the trails and getting soaking wet!  The temperature dropped drastically when the sun is covered with dark clouds.  These are photos of the sun setting over Columbine Lake. There is a bluegrass song entitled "Thunderclouds of love." 

Thunderclouds of love

 Your love hit me just like a flash of lightning
It came pouring from the thunder clouds of love
At first the turn of love was frightening
Now I know that it was sent from God above
I had been prayin' for nights on end
For some one who could make me laugh again
Then all at once from the darkness of my heart
There grew a light, the light was you love, fell like rain
No more, no more will I ever be lonely
I'll always have you here with me to love
An angel sent for an angel coming
To fill my heart with thunder clouds of love

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Deep Within the Heart of a Mountain My Soul Longs to be...


The lady in red is me walking on The Medicine Bow Trail.  The image conveys a lonely feeling to see the vastness of the mountains and how small I am in comparison but I was feeling exuberant and not lonely at all.  There was no place I would rather be then on a mountain top.  I felt like I was close to heaven.  There are so many spectacular views that it is hard to know where to start.  I did not have the resources to document the name of the mountains and the valleys in my photographs.  At Medicine Bow you can see 20 miles of mountain ranges and Wyoming 35 miles away.

Deep Within the Heart of a Mountain...

Deep Within the Heart of a Mountain
My Soul Longs to be...
There's a fire burning,
A passion so deep within my soul
 It blazes like the sun
 With an unquenchable fire
To follow every mountain path
 To Touch the earth's greatest majesties
To see what the eagle sees
In flight over the mountain peaks
and into the valleys below...
By PL Fallin

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow express a love for the sea the way I feel about the mountains:

The Secret of the Sea

Ah! what pleasant visions haunt me
   As I gaze upon the sea!
All the old romantic legends,
   All my dreams, come back to me.

Sails of silk and ropes of sandal,
   Such as gleam in ancient lore;
And the singing of the sailors,
   And the answer from the shore!

Most of all, the Spanish ballad
   Haunts me oft, and tarries long,
Of the noble Count Arnaldos
   And the sailor's mystic song.

Like the long waves on a sea-beach,
   Where the sand as silver shines,
With a soft, monotonous cadence,
   Flow its unrhymed lyric lines:--

Telling how the Count Arnaldos, 
    With his hawk upon his hand,
Saw a fair and stately galley,
   Steering onward to the land;--

How he heard the ancient helmsman
   Chant a song so wild and clear,
That the sailing sea-bird slowly
   Poised upon the mast to hear,

Till his soul was full of longing,
   And he cried, with impulse strong,--
"Helmsman! for the love of heaven,
   Teach me, too, that wondrous song!"

"Wouldst thou,"--so the helmsman answered,
   "Learn the secret of the sea?
Only those who brave its dangers
   Comprehend its mystery!"

In each sail that skims the horizon,
   In each landward-blowing breeze,
I behold that stately galley,
   Hear those mournful melodies;

Till my soul is full of longing
   For the secret of the sea,
And the heart of the great ocean
   Sends a thrilling pulse through me.

Ranger Meadows Trail at Shadow Lake Dam

Shadow Lake was formed by the dam built on the Colorado River near Lake Grand.  Ranger Meadows Trail loops to the dam and the trail follows the Colorado River south.  There were a lot of wild flowers in the meadows among the tall grasses.

The Colorado River was wider and deeper at the south end of the dam.  On trails north in the Rocky Mountains, the River waters are shallow and narrow like a creek.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Pristine Ranger Meadows Trail

I really like hiking Ranger Meadows Trail among the tall grass and wildflowers and to be in an environment of pristine wonder.  There were very few humans around and the vastness of the opened meadows was impressive.  I tried to get a panoramic shot but no camera angle could do it justice.

East Shore Trailhead, Shadow Mountain Lake

We hiked the East Shore Trailhead which is 1.5 miles to the Shadow Mountain Trail.  It had a beautiful view of the lake and forest and it intersects with the Ranger Meadows Trail.  We decided to take the Ranger Meadows Trail and loop back to the Colorado River for another 1.5 mile hike. The lake waters appear very calm with it's pastel shades of blue set against a blue sky.  Like 'A Dream Within a Dream".
A Dream Within a Dream
  by Edgar Allan Poe
Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow:
You are not wrong who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand--
How few! yet how they creep 
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep--while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

Edgar Allan Poe:  Born in 1809, Edgar Allan Poe had a profound impact on American and international literature as an editor, a poet, and a critic His stories mark him as one of the originators of both horror and detective fiction. Many anthologies credit him as the "architect" of the modern short story.                              

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Spirit's That Form'd this Scene by Walt Whitman

These photos were taken from top of Cedar Heights at Manitou
Springs.  Colorado Springs is on the left side and Pikes Peak is on the right.  It is a fantastic view and the Rocky Mountains are spectacular driving from Pikes Peak to Estes. 
In September 1879, Walt Whitman visits Colorado, the farthest west he'd ever get.  While in the three-year-old Centennial State, Whitman rebukes critics of his poetry with this poem.
Spirit That Form'd This Scene

Spirit that form'd this scene,
These tumbled rock-piles grim and red,
These reckless heaven-ambitous peaks,
These gorges, turbulent-clear streams, this naked freshness,
These formless wild arrays, for reasons of their own,
I know thee, savage spirit---we have communed together,
Mine too such wild arrays, for reasons of their own;
Was't charged against my chants they had forgotten art?
To fuse within themselves its rules precise and delicatesse?
The lyrist's measur'd beat, the wrought-out temple's grace---
      column and polish'd arch forgot?
But thou that revelest here---spirit that form'd this scene,
They have remember'd thee.
                                       --Walt Whitman

Before the Rain at Garden of the Gods

A panoramic view of Garden of the Gods in Colorado, Springs. I took these pictures from the Welcome Center facing the garden.  You can see the rain clouds moving in.  It had been raining daily for a week creating a raging flood in nearby Manitou Springs.  The town was devastated.  We drove through and many stores were still cleaning up from the flood. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Fat Cat Cafe

I am headed in my bright orange shoes to The Fat Cat Café for breakfast. It is my favorite place to dine in the morning and the only place opened for a real Colorado breakfast in Grand Lake.

As Darkness Spreads Across the Mountains

I love it at the end of the day when darkness starts to spread across the mountains.  The silhouette of the trees and shadows falling across the mountains is a poet's inspiration.

Horseshoe Bend, South Dakota

One of my trips in South Dakota included a mountain cliff in Fall River County called Horseshoe Bend.