Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.
This is the time of year when everyone loves the mountains because of the profusion of wildflowers. On our property there are so many various species of wild flowers that it is impossible for us to count them all. That is one of the things we will miss when we sell our home and move from here. We have an abundance of wild roses, columbine, lupine, Indian paint brush, violets, daisy and monk’s hood just to name a few. They tend to bloom for weeks and months producing a carpet of wildflowers. Walking through the property with all the wild flowers is one of the special advantages of living in the mountains. It is not just the varied colors and species but the profusion of flowers and flowering weeds that transform and carry you into a special place.
As I walked our property this morning the birds were singing their songs, getting a drink or bathing from our two streams or in search of food, plus the wild flowers were every where and the ground was like a green carpet mingled with a host of color. The chipmunks and ground squirrels seemed to notice the beauty too as I observed several sitting on stumps seeming to enjoy the time of year munching on a dandelion flower or some piece of food. Yesterday we went to cut up some downed trees but when we arrived at them there were three deer bedded down chewing their cuds so we decided not to disturb the deer and leave the cutting for another day. They feel so safe and secure here that they didn’t even get up even though we were within 30 feet from them. These are the things we will sorely miss when we move to a more comfortable and compatible environment that will not be as difficult to handle with aging body joints.
This time of year is one of those times that makes living in the mountains so special - like being reborn all over again each year and experiencing new life (except for sore joints). The elk, deer and bear have their babies, the woods are various shades of green splashed with a variety of colors from the wildflowers and it seems that life starts new from here. Fall is also a very special time in the mountains with the aspen and mountain oak changing colors and the smell of hot pine needles with the full aroma of fall. Both of these seasons either follow or proceed the harsh reality of snow season which in itself is a fun time, albeit a lot of physical work. Our summer in the mountains where we actually use a circulating fan to keep cool lasts about two weeks. Other than those two weeks the temperatures are very comfortable and the cool at night is excellent for good sleeping just by leaving the windows open.
So while we will miss all these aspects of mountain living at 9,750’ elevation we have concluded that living here full time for 16+ years will be memories we will always cherish and someone else can enjoy it in the future. Bodies get older making it hard to continue to fully enjoy this small area of paradise. We don’t know how long it will take to sell our homestead and this lifestyle but until that time happens we will continue to enjoy the ideal life and let things evolve on their own.
For more on mountain living with Bruce and Carol McElmurray go to: www.brucecarolcabin.blogspot.com, and if you are interested in our mountain property go to: www.coloradomountaincabinforsale.blogspot.com.