Monday, February 28, 2005

Roark Bluff

Roark Bluff

The first time that I ever went to the Buffalo River National Park, I was probably around ten years old. We drove in late in the evening to a campground called Steel Creek for a nearby creek that runs into the Buffalo River. Camp was set up and soon we were all in our tents fast asleep. Morning rolled around, the fall frost was thick on the grass when I woke up, unzipped the tent and stepped out. The imposing cliffs of Roark Bluff illuminated in the morning light, greeted me warmly even if being still in the shadow of the mountain I couldn't feel it. I fell in love with that bluff.

For many years after that first encounter, we would always camp there during our trips but my parents bought some land with a small cabin on a nearby mountain top where we would spend our nights in the years to come. I still drive down there and hike down there every now and then for a visit. In fact, my new bride and I hiked there one day during our honeymoon and spent an entire afternoon lounging by the pools soaking up the sun. I have taken numerous photographs and even made several paintings of those bluffs but none of them have turned out quite as good as the photo posted above.

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