Due to a last-minute change in plans, I found myself the proud owner of a day off, to myself.  I decided to take advantage of my proximity to the White Mountains and drive north.

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Back home, I spent days on end meandering the back roads of the California coast.   I love to wander without goal or destination.  In the same spirit I set off, with nowhere to go.

From the homestead, the back roads north are just around the corner, often unpaved.  In the case of Hasty Road they double as 4×4 trails.  You have to make sure which part of the road is yours.

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That berm to the right is NOT recommended for bigger vehicles, though I am sure some would disagree with me.

The trees are turning in earnest and it is hard not to go slow and gawk.

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Each tree changes in its own special way.  Oaks rust.

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Maples burn and the ash yellow and fade away.

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The pines are not invited to the party.

I stopped at many of the road side ponds for more reflection shots.

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The utter lack of traffic makes this easy in most areas.  There is a never-ending supply of graveyards tucked away in little pockets and valleys.

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Sometimes they have some of the best real-estate in the area.

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How’s that for an eternal view?

And apparently- don’t want to share.

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I came down from the mountains and followed the river for a time.  It still reminds me so much of the Sierras, a small bit of home on the other side of the world.

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There is something about rivers and running water that makes everything better.  Lakes are beautiful, but silent and the beaches (especially around New England) are usually so packed with people you can’t enjoy the sound of the ocean.   I have already expressed my feelings about what a beach should be.  I am completely bias, having grown up along side a creek.

It is transcendent, clear flowing water and warm rocks to sit on.  I have always done my best thinking and most profound healing sitting on rocks in rivers.

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I went all over; up, down and around.

I took crossroads as invitations to places I had never been before.  It was a day where being lost was a matter of opinion and most of the time I only had a general idea of my location (no GPS.)

Seriously, who cares where you actually are; when all that matters is that you were there to see things like this.

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This.

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And this.

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Things that will not last but a few weeks before the time of ice and snow comes again.  I am grateful to have this time and happier still that I can easily pass the day in the midst of such natural splendor.

I have always been fortunate to live in beautiful places; where my backyard is other people’s vacations.  It is a privilege we have sacrificed for but the view is worth it!

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Mt. Washington herself.

For me, California is still one of the most beautiful places on earth but fall in the White Mountains comes close.  I even took a ‘selfie’ with the trees but I think I may have done it wrong.

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Be well!

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