picture a narrow canyon split barely wide enough for a tightly engineered 2-lane road and the parallel rushing creek. craggy rocks line the spare space between the walls, and they ascend a hundred feet and more straight up, occasionally spotted with shrubbery and trees and seeping water.
breathe deeply, and inhale moist earth and the gently warming air, and feel nature seeping into your pores and sending any inner stress far, far away.
the feeling is peaceful and lush, as the road climbs gently for half a dozen miles and the trees thicken and the water begins to rush with greater intensity.
the grade steepens, the trees grow together more thickly, and a sheer rock cliff lets loose small shards of itself, rock by rock, as they tumble down and land upon each other in the meager depression lining the road.
this time your breath sends the scent of pine needles swirling throughout your system, reminding you of summer camp, of camping deep in the woods, of walking through shady conifer forests.
soon the vista is a sea of pines, topped by the stark gray cliff face of mount timpanogos, still wrapped in its slowly diminishing coat of sparkling white snow. dense groves of aspen surround you as the roads twists and winds and determinedly claws its way to the summit, after which it falls in ribbons of twists and curves, mile after mile, stretching its way down to the southern foot of this spectacular mountain.
a final deep breath is full of awe and delight, as you leave this fairytale land.
this commercial message has been brought to you courtesy of the alpine loop;
tomorrow you will return to beautiful durango, colorado, for another story of another fairytale land.