Colorado and Utah: A Montage of Mountains

As suspected, the drive from Lincoln to Denver on Monday was rather blah. We’d gotten our fill of pastoral farm scenery through Illinois and Iowa, so Nebraska (sorry cornhuskers) had little to offer out the window.

So, to liven things up, we decided to almost run out of gas in eastern Colorado (aka, Middle of Flippin’ Nowhere). When we finally reached civilization, after watching the gas gauge actually dip below the red line, we filled up with 20.06 gallons of gas. The tank holds 20.34 gallons. I looked it up. Close call.

We also apparently timed our trip perfectly, as we left Denver yesterday morning with sunny skies, and today they’re being pounded with a snowstorm. Another close call.

Yay for adventure!

The drive through the Rocky Mountains and Utah yesterday was a vast contrast to our drive across the plains. Having grown up in Washington state, I’ve seen plenty of mountains, but it’s been a long time. 🙂 It was lovely. Between CO and UT, I’m pretty sure we saw every variation of mountain, hill, ridge, mesa, butte, and whatever other rock formations you can think of.

It actually sounds kind of boring on paper. I know our family took many drives through scenic Washington when I was a kid, and I believe my attitude was something like, “If you’ve seen one mountain, you’ve seen them all.” I was young and stupid, what can I say. Mountains are amazing. Especially after living in the Midwest for well nigh a decade.

I was trying to figure out what invokes that feeling of awe when you look at a mountain. Dolittle, upon entering the Rockies, exclaimed, “I feel puny!” That’s part of it. But for me, it comes down to a simple truth: Humans can’t do that. We can’t make mountains. (Well, we can, but we have to use earth to make them, so it’s not really “making” them.) I always feel so humbled by creation, and that humility is amplified by witnessing the “big” things in nature. Mountains. Oceans. Stars. We can’t make those things, and never will be able to. I think that’s why people describe experiences in nature as spiritual. It’s like seeing the patient and timeless Hand of God at work right in front of you.

And now, I’m exhausted. Travel is tiring. So I’ll leave you with a montage of mountains I shot from our car window (and one of the fam at a potty stop). There are a lot. That drive through Utah was a photographer’s dream. I wished we could have stopped every five minutes to take pictures. But alas, we had a 10-hour drive, and only stopped to eat and pee. So I had to take pictures at 75mph through the car window. Glad they turned out as clear as they did. 🙂



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Annie writes about life, motherhood, world issues, beautiful places, and anything else that tickles her brain. On good days, she enjoys juggling life with her husband and homeschooling her children. On bad days, she binges on chocolate chips and dreams of traveling the world alone.

Comments 2

  1. Jacob and Kimberly Palmer

    Just found your blog, I’m excited to catch up on your journey but I had to read this post first (I’m a born and raised Utah girl). I adore the mountains. Every now and then I think about moving, but when I look around me and realize that I am literally surrounded by gorgeous mountains, I never want to leave. Gorgeous photos!

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