Friday, 05 October 2018 12:30

Light a Distant Fire

If Earth is my "Bucket List", then there is no natural place on its surface that I would not wish to return to over and over again. I already know this to be true of Cowee Mountains Overlook; and I also know that the beauty of sunset is not always seen solely in the West. This past week as Bonnie and I were scouting Smokies locations, we found ourselves near sundown at Cowee Mountains Overlook, Mile 430.7 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. However, as the sun sank lower and lower, what really caught my eye were the marvelous cumulus cloud mounds piling up in the South and East and being set afire by the golden hour's waning light.

A focal length of 34mm, barely, but still, wide-angleland, gave me the expansive angle-of-view I wanted, so as to include the mountainside falling away at my feet. An aperture of f/22 provided depth-of-field, and a shutter speed of 2.0 seconds at ISO 100 allowed for a medium overall exposure without showing unwanted motion in the distant clouds.

A I watched the spectacle unfold, I thought of Lucia St. Clair Robson's wonderful historical novel of the life of Osceola, Light a Distant Fire. The great Seminole warrior probably never made it to the land of Tsul 'Kalu, but I believe he would have appreciated the sight of the mountains and learning the story of the Slant-eyed Giant.

Read 268 times
More in this category: An Arrow of Water »


  • Comment Link Donald McGowan Saturday, 13 October 2018 12:36 posted by Donald McGowan

    Good morning, Everyone. Thank you all for joining me for this conversation. Bonnie and I are just home from a wonderful week at Lake Junaluska, NC, with an excellent group of Road Scholar adventurers. The mountains were wonderful, even if their fall colors are yet to really show themselves. Perhaps the cooler temperatures now coming in will be just what we need.
    Hey Chris. It's good to have you with us. Thanks for your kind comment; I really appreciate it, but your last words are some of the saddest I can imagine. Hopefully the time will pass quickly and we will welcome you back before very long. I'm sure these hills will be glad to see you. I hope you and Sue are well and looking forward to autumn in the Ohio Valley.
    Hey Nancy K; I really appreciate your being with us. And since I know how much you love mountains, I understand the honor of the words you have shared. Thank you.
    Hi Ron. It's always good to have you with us.I appreciate your kind words, and I could not agree more: the story is told in the cloudforms. I hope the Pioneer Valley is getting ready to put on a show for you very soon.
    Hey Chuck. I receive your kind thoughts with both a smile on my face and a tear in the corner of my eye. As you so well know, the light is everywhere and if we would allow it to reveal itself, we have to be willing to look in all directions all of the time, especially during the golden hours. Your path will always be special to me, and I am grateful we have had the chance to travel together as we have. Take good care, walk in beauty, and keep in touch. Namaste.
    Lee, what an unexpected and pleasant surprise, my friend. It's great to hear from you! I really appreciate your kind words. We'll have to get together and ride that road, my friend. It's the only way I know to be there. I hope all is well with you.
    Hey, John. Laconic is good! I hope you and Michele are doing well. My calendar tells me you should be arriving at the Folk School very soon. We hope to hear from you while you are down. Walk in Beauty.
    Thanks, again, Everyone. While the mountains may be lagging behind in their presentation of fall color, there is beauty to be found everywhere. I wish you a wonderful foliage season, wherever your path takes you.

  • Comment Link John DiGiacomo Sunday, 07 October 2018 13:37 posted by John DiGiacomo

    Well done!!

  • Comment Link Lee Morgan Sunday, 07 October 2018 11:49 posted by Lee Morgan

    What you captured here, Don, speaks to me! An Arresting image and I want to be there.

  • Comment Link Chuck Coburn Sunday, 07 October 2018 10:59 posted by Chuck Coburn

    A reminder to many and a lesson to some, the evening beauty in the west is not limited to there- look around. The foreground detail is a beautiful anchor that leads the eye to the distant beauty. Thank you for another beautiful image that reminds us here of the wonderful area we live in. Thank goodness the Appalachians extend northward and I will soon have a new section to explore.

  • Comment Link Ron Belovitz Sunday, 07 October 2018 10:31 posted by Ron Belovitz

    Great image! The cloud formations really make it.

  • Comment Link Nancy Sunday, 07 October 2018 08:32 posted by Nancy

    Don you captured the magic of the mountains
    Nancy K

  • Comment Link Chris Courter Sunday, 07 October 2018 08:11 posted by Chris Courter

    Another beautiful image of the spectacular Appalachian mountains. The mountains are calling, but I can't come back yet.

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

Site copyright © 2001 - 2019 Don McGowan & EarthSong Photography. 

All Rights Reserved.