This is the New River Gorge. The New River is arguably the 2nd oldest river in the world after the Nile, situated in the oldest mountain range in the world, the Appalachians. I’d say that she is wise and beautiful and sacred beyond our human (and societal) comprehension. An experience and energy that no camera could ever fully capture. But i’ll try and try until I can’t try anymore.
It seems appropriate that I finally got prints in last week from my trip to the area last month as the entire region of Southern West Virginia has flooded to a devestating degree. The people of the region are picking up the pieces of their lives and homes, covered in mud and poison. Some have lost all of their material possessions, but they haven’t lost their sense of community and empathy. As always, I am proud of West Virginians for holding up their people even when it seems that no one else is.
If you are able, consider donating a few dollars to relief efforts or donating necessary items to a collection site. http://www.wvflood.com
I’ve become, in the last few years, a great lover of my home in Appalachia. It needs more attention and love than it gets; sometimes even from the people who live there. Now, there are several renditions of flags for Appalachia out there- and one that is the generally accepted ‘unofficial flag of Appalachia’ acknowledged by organizations like the Appalachian Alliance- but this here is my own rendition of the flag. There are 13 stars for the 13 states that hold Appalachian counties, and a large blue mountain in the middle. Personally I think it reflects the mystery and the majesty the mountains should be treated with.
Watching the sun set from Clingman’s Dome (highest point in Tennessee) was a highlight of our trip for me. The splendor of the Appalachian Mountains can not be truly experienced through pictures. Only by seeing it in person can one truly appreciate what our region has to offer.
Have you visited the Kenova, West Virginia Pumpkin House this year? It’s a local fixture of 21 years, owned by the mayor of Kenova, and displays over 3000 carved pumpkins in a musical arrangement and light display. The pumpkins are hand-carved by members of the community, and it’s growing every year!
If you haven’t seen it, put it on your bucket list, Appalachians.