Autumn Hiking

When I first moved to the Middle-of-Nowhere, Rocky Mountains from a large metropolis resembling a box of concrete, I was surprised that autumn, especially its early phase, was considered a shoulder season.

After all, there is no better time to go hiking on a sunny day before the first snow arrives. It is warm enough to wear a t-shirt, yet breezy enough, even slightly damp, not to sweat. And the sights, no, the full-sense experience, is beyond imaginable, certainly beyond what a camera could capture. 

So where are all the tourists?! 

On second thought, all those visitors can stay home, leaving these boundless mountains to my possessive self. My possessive self and a couple of canine friends, to be exact. Bringing another human or two along isn't a bad idea either: make them carry that bear spray, in case a specimen trying to get plump for winter runs across your path.

And on one of those damp hopefully-bear-free forest paths, you might come across certain otherwordly sights. 

Or was that just the interplay of sunlight and the shadows?

This part of the Rockies has every autumn color, but red, as the famed maple is not native here. No, my mistake, it does feature red, too: those huckleberry bushes drying in the sun.

Other than that, the landscape is dominated by the evergreens that are still, well, green, though no longer verdant, and sprinkles of aspen and tamaracks turning golden. 

And a sea of blue.

Above and below.