Friday, July 16, 2010

Wildflower Wonderland

My final mountain hike of this trip was on the spectacular Saddle Mountain. This basalt dome is the highest in the area and the vistas are stunning. From the summit I could see five volcanoes and the Olympia range in the far distance. Because of the fog below I couldn't see the Pacific Ocean, but that was only a minor disappointment

The greatest sight from Saddle Mountain, however, is the plethora of wildflowers. On this hike I passed by vast meadows filled with paintbrush, aster, columbine, daisies and foxglove. The photo above from shows the summit and some of the flowers.

When hiking to the summits of mountains, sometimes I focus so much on getting to the top, I don't enjoy the journey there. This hike reminded me that beauty is to be found all along the way, if we have the eyes to see.

Hiking is a good metaphor for the spiritual journey. When we open our eyes to the beauty in the world around us, we enjoy and appreciate the journey so much more. Looking at the world through the lens of gratitude transforms how and what we see.

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