Mountains Matter

I grew up in the Midwest where there are no high mountains. When I was 17 or so, I went to Colorado for the first time and saw real mountains. With 2 buddies I went to the top of Pike’s Peak and fell in love with elevation. When I became an adult and married, Ruth and I often built trips around mountains like most people do and I began to photograph them a lot. When we had opportunity to move, we chose a mountainous locale.

I saw a video on Mount Revelstoke this week and realized that it was one of the 1st mountains I really fell in love with. This grand peak in British Columbia’s gorgeous mountains near Canada’s own Glacier National Park is not especially tall at 7,300 feet, but it’s incredibly beautiful and has its own National Park. The quiet city of Revelstoke is at its base and contains about 7,500 very lucky Canadians. Containing one of the 1st major ski areas in North America and a road to its summit, Mount Revelstoke is a place I must go back to eventually. I didn’t realize until I saw the video that Revelstoke is criss-crossed with many easy hiking trails to enjoy. It definitely is a must-see-again place.

Ruth and I can now sometimes see Mount St. Helens from our property. We didn’t live near it until it lost it head in 1980. We hope it’s quiet for a long time now. We saw it up close for the 1st time shortly after it erupted, and I am still amazed at how quickly the land around it recovered. We have been on it several times since that time because it’s a popular destination for visitors.

Another mountain we have become very familiar with is Oregon’s Mount Hood. On clear days we can see it wonderfully framed by Highway 14 near our house, and we often take visitors to the historic Lodge near its summit for root beer and stunning views. Again, like all the mountains near us, Mount Hood is always a potential eruption candidate. I love photographing it from the air. It seems like many flights out of Portland cruise near this summit.

One year I found myself in Aspen, CO by myself. I had not planned to go there so had no place to stay. The closest accommodations were in Leadville on the other side of Independence Pass, so I got used to driving over to Leadville late at night. Closed completely in the winter and sometimes one lane, this very high road that traverses a 12,093 feet pass is not for the timid. Since doing this drive several times, Ruth and I have experienced Independence Pass again and again and have learned its colorful history.

I have not been back to Pike’s Peak since that first time and was pleased when I learned recently that our son recently approached its summit. Now living in Denver, he will probably have an opportunity to do this again. I also hope to repeat this experience with Ruth when we visit him.

Hank

About roadsrus

Since the beginning, I've had to avoid writing about the downside of travel in order to sell more than 100 articles. Just because something negative happened doesn't mean your trip was ruined. But tell that to publishers who are into 5-star cruise and tropical beach fantasies. I want to tell what happened on my way to the beach, and it may not have been all that pleasant. My number one rule of the road is...today's disaster is tomorrow's great story. My travel experiences have appeared in about twenty magazines and newspapers. I've been in all 50 states more than once and more than 50 countries. Ruth and I love to travel internationally--Japan, Canada, China, Argentina, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, etc. Within the next 2 years we will have visited all of the European countries. But our favorite destination is Australia. Ruth and I have been there 9 times. I've written a book about Australia's Outback, ALONE NEAR ALICE, which is available through both Amazon & Barnes & Noble. My first fictional work, MOVING FORWARD, GETTING NOWHERE, has recently been posted on Amazon. It's a contemporary, hopefully funny re-telling of The Odyssey. View all posts by roadsrus

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