“Only going alone in silence, without baggage, can one truly get into the heart of the wilderness. All other travel is mere dust and hotels and baggage and chatter.” – John Muir
If I could ever spend time with a person of the past it would be John Muir. He explored the wilderness in the 1800s. The majority of the time he was alone. Him and the creatures that inhabited the area.
His love for the mountains was comparable to my love for the Ozark rivers of Missouri. His books and essays were influential in my admiration and respect for nature.
I can only imagine what kind of experience it would have been to explore the Ozark rivers in the 1800s.
Many times when I am camped on a gravel bar sitting in front of a fire, I find myself fantasizing about what it would have been like back then.
I imagine what the water would have been like free of pollutants. River banks and gravel bars void of litter and unmolested by ATVs. A place not yet touched by the hand of man and his idea of progress.
Without the infringement of artificial light, created by near by towns and dusk to dawn lights, the stars had to have the appearance of magnificent diamonds in the night sky.
It boggles my mind to think one would probably not see another human for days or weeks. One would experience the true feeling of being alone. Lost in the magnificence of Mother Earth and Her beauty. I can only imagine.
The Ozark rivers of Missouri gives one an avenue to seek and find one’s inner being. A place to observe the true beauty of Mother Earth. A place to heal their spirit and cleanse their soul. To enjoy it one must clear their mind and become one with the river. Then and only then can you understand my love for the Ozark rivers.