Autumn Bliss in the Mountains

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Each moment of the year has its own beauty,
a picture which was never before and shall never be seen again.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

A Crisp Autumn Day

A few days ago, my partner and I enjoyed a fabulous mid-week hike in the mountains. It was one of those walks that stays with you for a long time. I’m still thinking about it today.

The morning dawned still and crisp and clear—it couldn’t have been a lovelier day for an autumn walk. We set out for Wedge Pond, in Kananaskis Country, about an hour’s drive west from home here in Calgary. The drive there is gorgeous, a treat in itself: the land covered in honeyed morning light, mist rising from the ponds, golden fields dotted with hay bales, and, in the distance, beyond the rolling foothills, the beautiful Rocky Mountains rising to meet a clear blue sky.

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Blissfully Alone

We arrived at our destination and found that Wedge Pond, in all her autumn glory, was completely and utterly ours. We were blissfully alone—it was just us, the Gray Jays and the chickadees. That is my idea of heaven.

We hiked around the pond and made our way to a sunny wooden bench, where we basked in the warmth of the late autumn sun and listened to the last of the leaves falling off the poplars. It was so quiet and still, we could hear the sound of a single leaf falling from a tree, making distinctive tickticktick sounds as it glanced off bare branches on its way down to the forest floor.

Every now and again, a gentle puff of air sent a leaf parasailing over the pond, gliding in wide circles until it gently landed on the water’s surface. Trout jumped out of the pond to snag insects and plopped back in with a solid kerplunk. Every sound was so magnified—once, I thought I heard a single leaf land on the forest floor and echo across the water. It was so quiet and still we dared not speak, out of reverence for all that beauty. When one of us finally broke the silence, it was with a whisper. I have no idea how long we sat there—I lost all sense of time.

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!

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Autumn grasses growing along the pond, illuminated by the morning sun.

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Reflections in Wedge Pond.

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More autumn colours—perhaps my favourite colour palette of all the seasons.

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Fallen leaves shining in the morning sun, like gold coins.

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Frost-covered leaf in the morning sun.

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More frosty fronds.

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Every leaf gone but still beautiful.

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A red leaf in the undergrowth.

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Wedge Pond panorama (Tokina AT-X 11-20mm f/2.8).

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Me, making my way around Wedge Pond.  (Photo by my partner).

Image Credits:

All photographs by madlyinlovewithlife: © 2016 madlyinlovewithlife

16 thoughts on “Autumn Bliss in the Mountains

  1. Oh Jeannie! It’s like heaven on earth indeed. Gorgeous, simply amazing. I can almost see the smile on your face as you take in the beautiful surroundings and breathe the crisp autumn air. Wow :) Wishing you and your partner a lovely weekend!!

    • Hello Takami! I’m glad you enjoyed the photos. It is a wonderful reminder to us of a truly was a magical time in the mountains. Everything worked out perfectly, right down to having the pond all to ourselves for so long. It’s Thanksgiving Weekend here and we are enjoying good food, good company and counting our many blessings. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and stay well! :)))

  2. Wow…such beautiful images! Especially the frosty ones. I never knew that Canada’s Thanksgiving Day was different from ours. Happy Thanksgiving Day to you :)

  3. Wonderful post, Jeannie.. I see you enjoyed this outing very much. Your photos are beautiful. I wish I had more time to be out here in BC..when I am not gone somewhere else and could also be one with the nature. I love your text. It is so nice to read. I could almost feel I was there with you looking over your shoulder. :-) Thanksgiving is gone but I thank you and hope yours was also nice.

  4. Thanks so much, Jeannie, for taking us with you on this glorious and peaceful visit to Wedge Pond. Each photo is a work of art, and your writing and descriptions are heavenly. I, too, love being the only humans on outdoor adventures, and the peace of hearing leaves drop, hearing the wind, it transforms my state. It is always a breath of fresh air to visit you here.

    • Hello Jet! Once again, I’m so sorry for my late response. Thank you for your lovely, thoughtful comment. In all of your amazing travels, I’m sure that you’ve had many opportunities to be totally alone in some of the world’s most amazing and beautiful natural places. Thank you again for your very kind words. Wishing you and yours many more happy travels! :))

  5. Such beauty you captured! But your words make the beauty you capture shine with brilliance! Outstanding!
    Sorry I am late to wish you a belated Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Hello Nancy! I’m so sorry that I am so very late in replying to your lovely comment! Thank you so much for your very kind words. I hope you are having a wonderful autumn. Wishing you and yours a very happy day! :))

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