Solo Mountain Solstice

“Sunrise” in the mountains is a malleable moment. You rise and dress for the -5 F (-20 C). weather, taking a hiking staff and the drum case.

You walk the trail up the east ridge, then shoulder through a grove of Gambel oak until you can see the Sun’s glow.

Start drumming softly. A Steller’s jay is the only other voice. Faithful Dog snuffles and crunches in the snow. Less Faithful Dog has already gone her own way, following fox tracks through the forest.

Amazingly, not one car is moving on the state highway down in the valley.

The Sun is on your face now. After a time, having thought on what you need for the new solar cycle, you follow your tracks back down. Less Faithful Dog is on the front porch, all wiggly and cheerful.

The temperature has climbed to 0 F.

Best wishes to my readers for a happy and productive solar year.