Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Circling the Mountain

Camelback Mountain at night, north side

Some days, in the normal course of commuting by bicycle and making some routine stops, I end up making a complete circle around Camelback Mountain in Phoenix. Not right around the base, but close enough to know it's near, and, exactly a full or complete squarish circle around it. On some of those days, the schedule causes me to be on the northern leg of the squarish circle at night. It's not an extremely bicycle-friendly zone, but on the other hand I do enjoy the stretches of riding downhill on a swoopy path in the dark.

This is one of my favorite views, which the photo above barely transmits but perhaps it gives something of the idea, of this great chunk of rock that looms up in the middle of our city. For reasons not entirely clear, it felt like a privilege to ride around it on my bicycle on this warm night, and to be able to stop with my bicycle beside a sidewalk in relatively quiet spot to look up at it. 

I circle the mountain, and these odd but grand notions that capture my notice take on significance beyond obvious or immediate concerns, but maybe tie me to others who have looked up at this chunk of rock on a quiet night within the last several thousand years and perhaps felt something similar that was also bigger than their own specific and transient details.


  1. Perhaps some Pima Indians felt much the same way...

    1. You put your hand to the rock, and think your mind back 1500 years or so, to see.

  2. Yes! Yes.
    Check out Tamalpais Walking by Killian and Snyder.


Please feel free to comment here, almost anything goes, except for obvious spam or blatantly illegal or objectionable material. Spammers may be subject to public ridicule, scorn, or outright shaming, and the companies represented in spam shall earn disrepute and ire for each occurrence.