Tag Archives: mountains

Rocky Mountain Fall Splendor



Bruce and I got away for a couple of days to revisit some of our favorite hiking spots in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Having lived in Estes Park (gateway to the national park) we knew to expect crowds in town and on the trails. But, due to Covid, the park has instituted a policy where visitors have to register beforehand in order to get into the park. So, hiking the trails above Sprague Lake was a wonderfully private experience for us. I love fall in the Rockies. Just look at those colors.


What a joy to walk these trails, to feel the hint of the bracing winds that will soon descend on the mountain valleys and cloak it in deep snows. We surprised a deer grazing just off the trail. And a squirrel examined  us cautiously, scurrying amid the rocks and tree roots to get a better look at us giant humans.

At our campground, we sat by the river and listened to the bull elk bugle nearby.

We enjoyed an early dinner at the Stanley hotel.

Little excursions like this are such a gift from a loving God. He seems to say, “Stop working. Get outside and play for awhile. Breathe the mountain air, savor the fall colors, sniff the aroma of pine and spruce, delight in watching the elk, stretch out your legs and travel my terrain. I made all of this for you to enjoy.”


The Glory of Small Things

July 2010 Vacation 092

I love the mountains, and I’m blessed to live at the eastern foot of the Rocky Mountains.

For years we’ve hiked at high elevations so we could admire the spectacular snow-capped “fourteeners,” the big, blue skies, cascading rivers and towering spruce.

But after years of admiring the big things, I’ve lately found myself drawn to the little things along the trail. The exquisite columbines, wild rose, cinquefoil, asters, the way moss clings to rock, the tiny, beautifully shaped leaves of the various plants that cling close to the ground.

I used to pass these little things by. They didn’t seem significant in comparison to the majesty of the mountains.

Perhaps the reason I now notice these small aspects of the mountains is because I’ve grown in my ability to appreciate beauty in all its forms.

The mountains are wonderful, but we miss much along the trail if we only notice their lofty heights and fail to look closer.

I think my Christian faith is a lot like this. When I first professed faith, I was impressed by the bigness of the Gospel. That God should love me so much He’d sacrifice His one and only Son.

But later I began to notice (and praise God for) the beautiful, tiny things along the Kingdom “trail.” Not only the bigness of God, but His smallness, too:

  • A single word or phrase in the Word that turns my sour mood into one of rejoicing.
  • Answered prayer.
  • The assurance that He is near—always near.
  • The knowledge that little occurrences such as a random phone call, a chance meeting, discovering just the right article on the internet, are God’s call for me to revise, repent, or re-deploy.

These little daily things make me aware of God’s handprints all over my mind and heart.

The majestic “mountains” made me a believer in God’s Greatness. But it is the small things at the foot of the mountains that give me glimpses into His Glory.

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory. (Is. 6:3 NIV Bible)