Remind me to bring my camera up on Brown Mountain next time (tomorrow?). It is so beautiful up there right now. We’re finally getting a good base of rain in the ground and the plants are responding with fresh new growth and starting their flowering cycle. Today I saw the first manzanita flower of the season! - a cluster of about twenty tiny white bell-shaped flowers. And the first lupine flower of the season, too. Even the little rockslides are incredibly colorful as new rock is exposed to the light of day for the first time.
I was reminded today of a conversation I had with a friend a few months ago about a house that was for sale right at the Brown Mountain trailhead. I suggested how incredible it would be to live there and have Brown in your backyard. He said he thought he’d get bored of riding that same trail all the time because it’s just a fire road without much to see. I have no way of understanding a comment like that. All I can say is that I want to ride that trail forever.
In the book I’ve been reading John Muir has been noting the difference between the perception of nature as picturesque versus beautiful versus sublime. He seems to be suggesting that while each of these represents a different appreciation for nature or Nature, each is inherently misleading because of its foundation in an anthropocentric viewpoint. These scenes in nature that we call picturesque or beautiful or sublime are deeply rooted in this earth – far beyond their relative appeal to humans alone. Brown Mountain is infinitely more beautiful than we realize. Those tiny little white flowers speak volumes to the universe.