We must cross the creek inside the camper to reach our camp site. The wheels slip and slide over the rocks, as the camper sways in the current. The treads find their grip; we bump along slowly while the water sloshes against the side. We arrive at the other side of the creek in just minutes. The road is not paved here, but dirt covered, making for a rough ride up the hill.

The site overlooks the creek, where we can hear the water bubbling and jumping over the rocks as if racing to see who can be the first one down hill. The water is crystal clear, and every now and then we can see the Brook Trout swimming just under the surface. They are rather large fish, dark in color with big eyes that stare back at you. They come up to the surface and feed on the bugs that land for a sip of water.

The camper parks on one side of the campsite; we hop out to set up the two tents the kids will sleep in. All around us giant trees sway in the breeze. The forest air is filled with a strong Christmas tree scent coming from the Pine and Fir.

The mountains are much larger than imagined, like stone castles filling the sky, dusted with snow still even though it’s July. The air is cooler up here as well. It’s an invigorating crisp feeling, and I can’t help breathing in deeply the fresh air.

There are hundreds of butterflies fluttering among the wild flowers that cover the foothills. The red, yellow, blue and violet of the flowers must be what is attracting them. Or perhaps it’s that sweet floral scent that’s mixing in with the pine? The mix of the “flutter-bys” with the flowers creates an unbelievable palette of color much brighter than any rainbow I’ve ever seen.

A Hawk screeches overhead, I look up and watch its impressive wings stroke up and down above me. The Hawk catches up with the breeze, and it begins to glide along, up and then downward with the wind. It spots something on the ground, folds its wings back, and dives head first.   It seems like the Hawk is going to come to a crash landing, then he appears to halt in mid air, its talons swinging out from under it, and grabs up a small snake. The snake wiggles in the Hawks grasp as they both fly upwards again into the trees and disappear into a massive nest.

Smoke begins to rise into the sky, and the scent of wood burning fills the air. Gathering some of the smaller branches that litter the edge of the forest, I walk back to the campsite with my arms overflowing and drop the wood onto the pile that has already accumulated. Evening falls as I collapse at the edge of the camp fire. Watching the flames grow higher, I sigh over the end of the perfect day.

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