Peak from Elk Knob

Deep Breaths, Again

I was only gone for two days, but the feeling I get every time I return home to the mountains never lessens.

I’ve never been sentimental about places I’ve lived, but I feel more deeply grounded in these Appalachian mountains than anywhere else I’ve been. From the time these pale blue layered ranges appear over the hood of the car to the moment I step outside to breathe the cool mountain air, I feel relieved, hallowed, and refreshed.

This week, arriving up on Elk Knob, which is just one mountain range over from our own, was a familiar pleasure. There were still pockets of snow here and there, and we parked the car and took a brisk 30 minute hike to reaquaint ourselves with ourselves and the quiet forest around us.

This is a view that we have of our own mountain—it’s the tall one on the right—that we love to see as we begin the drive down from Elk Knob. It reminds me that we’re still 7 miles from our house, but we’re already home.

Peak from Elk Knob
Peak (on the right, in the middle ground) from Elk Knob

You can see one of my other favorite photos from this spot in this post.

Have you ever been sentimental about a particular place you lived (or currently live)? What is it about that place that claims you so hard, or gives you a feeling of belonging and rootedness?

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