"There is a pleasure in the pathless woods, There is a rapture on the lonely shore, There is society where none intrudes ..."
When I lived back east in New Jersey, I'd have to drive about two hours to the north to reach the mountains. Portions of the Appalachian Trail ran west and south through the northern parts of the garden state. While they held their own sort of beauty, outside
my backdoor the tailgate of my truck here in Big Sky, Montana, lies miles and miles of forested/mountainous trails. I debated between a 12 mile and 5.5 mile trek for this unseasonably warm late winter day, and wound up going with the latter. I usually have to mentally prepare myself for longer hikes and just didn't have it in me this time. Click on my blog on life post entitled here: Pioneering a Solo Adventure to read about a time that I did.
The hike begins at the porcupine creek trail head, but quickly breaks off onto what looked like an unmaintained horse trail. Piles of manure began showing as I made my way uphill, more than likely buried by the winter snow. A little over a mile in, I lost the trail due to the snow cover. My AllTrails map took me across a dormant field of sage, so I followed the tracks, in the hopes that it would re-connect with what supposed to be the trail. A clearing in the field allowed me a spectacular view of Lone Peak, one I had not seen yet during my stay in Big Sky, Montana.
Eventually I'd find my way back onto the trail and begin the slow descent up to the ridge. I only made it up a couple hundred feet before it disappeared into the forest. Sometimes my adventure spirit gets the best of me, but on this day I decided to turn around. Once again I was treated to a spectacular view to the west, of Lone Peak in all her beauty, so I stuck around for a bit to soak it all in. The mountain landscape photography print above, is available in a variety or sizes and products by clicking on the photo.
The spiritual path has led me here, to Big Sky, Montana. Looking back I can connect all of the dots, but in the actual moment it made no freakin' sense. As I sat in the sunshine and soaked up the rays, I thought back to 2002ish. So many similarities linking then to the now. I'm so blessed to have been given the chance to start my life over again. I feel like I'm back in that part of my life again, yet much older and wiser. It hasn't come with-out a lot of hiccups though. Hiccups I continue to burp up at times even today. I'm still learning though, and still growing, and still evolving. Much of it I can attribute to remaining grounded in Big Sky, Montana for the winter of 2022.
For more inspirational tales, thoughts and photography visit me on instagram: @ryan.j.drewes
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