Mount Rainier in Late Summer

After four years of living in the Seattle area, I finally made it to Mount Rainier this weekend. We were in time for the tail end of the wildflowers, enjoying aster, indian paintbrush, lupine, and others. Enjoy this photo tour of late summer at Paradise in Mount Rainier National Park.

Finding My Mountain

The Land is Part of Your Identity

In the pepeha, traditional Maori introduction, you introduce yourself with your mountain and your river. Your mountain and river are a part of you, a mark of where your home and heart lie. I’m not Maori, but I embrace this explicit relationship to the land. But what makes a mountain my mountain?

What Makes a Mountain Your Own?

Leaning on a madrone on Mount Tam

Enjoying madrones, my favorite type of tree, while hiking on Mount Tamalpais in California

Each person has different criteria. I want a mountain that holds its own, but isn’t necessarily the biggest or most impressive specimen. I’d prefer a mountain that I can visit frequently. I want to know its name and recognize it from all angles.

I am trying to adopt a new mountain. Four years ago I transplanted myself from California to Washington. Begrudgingly I traded my California driver’s license for a Washington one, my California voter’s registration for a Washington one — but my heart finds it harder to swap my mountain for a new one. Although I’m consciously trying to pick a mountain near my home in Seattle, I feel that choosing your mountain is more emotional than rational.
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