The sun comes out early these days, and with it, magic. The warblers and songbirds and ravens begin their choruses about 4:30 a.m. leading up to the explosion of light that turns dusk and grey and shadow into a spectacular vision of color. Green blooming all around in beautiful variety. Yellows, reds and oranges, blues and purples and blacks follow. Some right on top of others as sunlight illuminates and reveals new levels like the layers of an onion. It reminds me of painting
Doing watercolor paintings at the break of dawn is a study in speed and first impression. As the light transverses the horizon, colors both change and disappear. Shadows shorten, details emerge. One has to practice sketching quickly and sometimes doing quick color studies on another page of paper; mapping the sequence as morning advances, squashing the grey dreamy unknown.
It’s a quick record of something normal and everyday that is also magical. Doing it right requires you to take mental notes, to take physical notes, to blend water and color and pencil on the fly and then to return to the “canvas” to complete. It requires observation.
To me, this is the best part because it means we have to slow our roll, to notice everything and to focus. To watch and nothing else. To stop the mind from multi-tasking. To see.
It usually takes on average 3 to 4 days to adapt to the schedule of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness to the point where you get into a groove. Paddle, make camp, prep, cook, swim, campfire, sleep. Wake early, light stove, make coffee or water for tea, etc. Prep, cook breakfast. Trips for water, boiling water, latrine trips, packing up, unpacking, washing up, cleaning up, bear proofing, not to mention: hammock, reading, fishing, swimming, staring, and un wind ing.
It takes a couple of days to detox from the business and busyness of modern life. To enjoy quiet. To discover a partnership with nature.
— We hope you’ll take the time to discover how beautiful mornings and evenings in the BWCAW can be and how taking that time can change your outlook on life. Indeed, how wilderness can shape your life into something different than you had planned. You won’t find it virtually. You’ve got to get out in it to see what I mean. 1-800-223-6565 is a free call to place that can get you in touch with our Outfitting department. Drew, Adam and Tim Barton are on-hand to get you started on the canoe adventure of a lifetime. One that you’ll want to repeat again and again.
Don’t let the sun set on one more of your days without booking some of the summer/fall in the Boundary Waters…