Back to the Wild Wild West

The Front Range of Colorado, how I long to get back there! It has been a few years, but I remember it like it was yesterday. My husband and I have gone out several times and we have logged many a mile on those mountain trails. I took this photo at the foot of one of my favorite trails. I found a blogger that has the good fortune of living in Colorado I travel the trails vicariously via her blog posts and breathtaking photos.

Whenever I can’t sleep, I take myself back there. It quiets my mind to imagine us heading for the trail, parking the car, opening the car door, the sound of our sneakers crossing the gravel parking lot, looking at the trailhead map and setting off on a dusty dirt trail. This particular trail gently climbs the hill. Making a turn, I see the remnants of an old stone house, the fields are open and I see the steers grazing in the grass. Several have huge horns and I always look to see how far away the trees are, wondering if I could make it if one decides to charge. But they couldn’t care less about hikers, continuing to graze, they pay me no attention at all.

I continue my climb. I know where I am heading. The trail forks off into different directions, but my course is set for the top, to the trees. There is a particular tree that I am looking for, it’s silly I know, but I look for it each time I hit that trail. It’s been many years now since I have been there, I wonder if I will recognize it? I reach the trees and start the steep descent, the trail is a cliffhanger, rocky with loose stones. The trees line the side of the trail. I hug the hillside, I don’t like heights much, but there it is, midways down the the trail, this magnificent tree reaching for the sky. It is a beauty. I am happy to find it. Continuing to the bottom where the trail becomes a switchback, I begin to cross over and up to the next hill. I look across to the hill I just climbed and I see a plein air painter over there, painting the view that I am now climbing. I envy her. Little did I know that in the year 2020, I would pick up my own paintbrush.

I am heading for the pines. I am almost there…

Painted on 9 in x 12 in Arches 300 lb watercolor block using Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Indigo, Lamp Black, Leaf Green, and Turquoise Blue.

Reference photo used:

Happy Trails,



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