I Wanted a Walk But Got So Much More

The sun had just rose over the hilltop and was kissing the tips of the tree branches alongside Fivemile Creek. The river’s breath was steadily rising from the trickle of water that had yet to freeze over. Every twig, weed, bush, tree, and winter berry was hugged by ice crystals, sunlight bouncing off of them. Despite the frigid temps there was signs of life everywhere. Fresh rabbit tracks followed the fence line, birds sang softly and the woodpeckers were working away. Even the breath I drew was a reminder of how alive the earth is as it instantly froze the minute it escaped my nose and mouth.

One foot in front of the other, my boots sank into the deep snow. I kept walking, looking, watching, feeling. At the edge of the river I stopped and put my camera down. The sight was so beautiful it brought me to tears. I could feel my chest tighten but not from stress this time. It was almost too beautiful to bear, so pretty it hurt. (Or maybe that was just me taking in the -10° air). The sun was warm on my face as it filtered through the trees, it bounced and sparkled off the snow and ice in the river. The gentle sounds of the barely flowing water, rolling over and under the sheets of ice. The little chickadees flitting around, hopping from bush to bush making the feather-light snow fall of the branches and float gently in the air.

This little creek that runs through our property and more largely this farming valley is a source of beauty and a place of reflection and enlightenment for me. Liberating, soothing, restoring. All things I could feel both individually and simultaneously. A truly spiritual experience. I had wanted just a walk by the river but what I got was so much more.

Enjoy these photographs I made of the scenes from my morning walk.

It was so cold, ice stuck to everything.
The icy fog rose off the water surface.
Such a beautiful sight.
Goodnight moon.
A winter wonderland.

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