A Serene and Settled Majesty

There is a serene and settled majesty to woodland scenery that enters into the soul and delights and elevates it, and fills it with noble inclinations.
Washington Irving

When the stresses and sounds of daily life are just too much my go-to escapes for some peace and quiet are the gym (during off-hours) and the mountains.  I’m usually a fair weather hiker so  you won’t find me in the woods during a snowstorm however our corner of the PNW has plenty of mountain hikes where you can enjoy both snow and flowers in the middle of August.  Pack a few extra layers for changing conditions and you can throw snowballs in short sleeves then enjoy a picnic lunch next to wildflowers on the edge of an alpine forest.  I leave home with my head full of problems to solve but by the time I’ve driven away from the city and up a winding tree-lined road the buzz starts to fade and after a few hours wandering through fields and forests they seem very far away.

We left Bellingham on a warm August morning for the Mount Baker Highway and Artist Point but by the time we reached our destination the mountains were surrounded by fog and our trailhead was still covered by a few feet of winter snow.  Instead we turned to pathways I usually overlook in my haste to find famous mountain vistas and the misty alpine air added a new layer of peace and quiet.

If you’d like to explore, hike or snowshoe at Artist Point the Washington Trails Associaton website is full of information, maps and trail reports.

If you like these lovely alpine flowers they are a small patch of avalanche lily (Erythronium montanum) native to coastal British Columbia and the alpine and subalpine Olympic and Cascade Ranges of the Pacific Northwest of Washington and Oregon.  Erythronium montanum flowers shortly after the snow melts in late spring, in damp subalpine woodlands and alpine meadows, often in extensive patches. Blooming plants may persist into midsummer about the edges of snowfields.  – Wikipedia

Posted as part of the Weekly Photo Challenge:  Serene

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16 thoughts on “A Serene and Settled Majesty

  1. It’s so gorgeous out in your neck of the woods. I always love visiting my brother (who lives near Seattle) and taking walks around his neighborhood. Your mountain shot is beautiful.

  2. ahhh – i am with you on the “off hours” for certain places!
    and nice post – my fav of it is the opening photo- the yellow and shape of the flowers works so well with the muted tones and a yellowish ground to the back –

    1. Sometimes “off hours” is the only way to enjoy a place. 😉 Happy to hear you like the opening photo, it was the first one I picked to illustrate the post. I added the second shot once I realized it had been a month since my last post and thought I should share a few more photos before I forget I have them. 🙂

  3. Pingback: Serene: Sea View – What's (in) the picture?

    1. Thanks, Janet! It’s a special place and the road is only open for about three months due to snow pack so when we make it it’s always a treat. 🙂

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