Sunrise was strange – coppery, elusive – like another sunrise, in another place. We packed up as reluctantly as ever. The only thing that ever spurred us on was the thought of the trip back – the traffic after Kandy if we left Barking Deer Lodge too late.
As we crested the hill at the end of the driveway, we looked up at the twin pillars of the Gap, as always. Checking. Marking its majesty in our memories till our return.
Turning sharp left at the bottom we headed for home down the rutted ribbon of asphalt, winding through the little settlement at the old line-rooms, past the Forestry Department. Unusually, for a Monday morning, the road seemed empty. No tuk tuks or tractors coming our way, no bus chugging up the steep climb out of the pine forest. Already nostalgic for water rushing over rocks, deep, scented forest and glades choked with illicit cardamom, we were chattering merrily, plotting our return.
Was it my imagination, I asked, or did it seem cooler? Normally, by now, we’d be about to be plunged into that familiar sense of inevitability – our Knuckles weekend was effectively over. Soon we’d have descended to tropical altitudes, the damp blanket of mid-morning heat would force up the shutters, blocking the scents and sounds of the mountains. This morning seemed different.
And there, drifting down the stairs from the kovil we came across the reason why – we were entering a world of swirling, misty clouds. Our first taste of the infamous – and undeniably poetic – Knuckles mists.
What should have been a white-knuckled drive down through the estates and forests to the river valley six thousand feet below was too enchanting to be frightening. The further we descended into the heart of the white-out, the quieter, more hushed the world became – no calls of pickers, or cries of birds, even the eternal wind seemed to have stilled … Held in the embrace of cool, moist air, we were alone with the mountains.
Thanks to Ailsa’s Travel Theme, Mystical. Pop across to view her mysterious fairy forest and other entries.
The most beautiful compliment – Aken, an artist in Africa, was inspired to paint this splendid watercolour of the bend in the road.
If you haven’t seen his site, I recommend it to you – not just for this rendering of our morning on the mountain, but because his vision is unique.
Lovely photos 🙂
It was a pretty special morning, that’s for sure 🙂
Thanx, Srappy … 🙂
Our whiteouts are cold and made of snow. Yours are nicer. 😉
Yes … no malignancy here 🙂
This captures the theme perfectly. To be enveloped or shrouded in this fog or mist is indeed mystical. It looks like time stood still. Beautiful photos and description.
Funny, we were so avid to experience it we seemed to push at time, wanting to see around the next bend, and the next … yet it was the stillness, and silence that kept bringing us to a halt 🙂
Stunning. Nothing beats the mountains.
Between this morning and now, you’ve changed your Avatar again … is that climber after you, mate? 🙂
It is! Or a few mental issues!
Absolutely love your Knuckles mist images and description. There should be fairies popping out everywhere, and elves, and even Brigadoon.
It seemed very ‘foreign’, writecrites … the shape of the trees, the steepness old the road and curves … absolutely full of magical creatures luring us onward 🙂
What a trip that must have been. I love misty mornings in a mountain forest. The world seems so calm and peaceful.
Calm and peaceful, yes, and yet mysterious, and just daring you to explore further 🙂
What a wonderful and magical morning you had. Love how the mist created such a mystical feel to the day.
The mist is a feature there, as it turns out – with poetic names for rocks and ridges that talk about the mist curling, and drifting … 🙂
Love our mystical photos. You describe the journey so well. 🙂
You know a picture’s never enough for me, Sylvia!
A great post my friend, lovely images combined with a very well written article 🙂
It was just great to try to put into words the things I remember from that morning – mystical it surely was, especially when you consider it was five or six years ago, and yet I can still remember how I felt as though it were yesterday!
Loved this post…. the photos are magnificent, eerie like, must be wonderful to experience such a setting… looks as though your in another world… and the silence must make it special…
“But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.”…
Beautiful images, as always. 🙂
I just LOVE those foggy trees, wonderful!
Have a lovely Sunday!
I did, Marie – it was my favourite travelling companion’s birthday and so of course, a great celebration. I must remember to send her the link so she can relive that otherworldly adventure of ours.
Mysticism is powerful and I love that your chosen photos and story speak to that aspect of it.
All your posts are brilliant but this one especially so. 🙂
That’s fabulous to know – it was the most wonderful morning moving through the white world of the mists, trees looming, hushed and so still … and it’s only when you get an opportunity like this that you can display some of the pictures and talk about it. 🙂
Beautiful narrative and images, wow! It must be an awesome feeling- alone with the mountains. 🙂
Yes, it was, Amy. We had to drag ourselves back down to the reality of the waiting world and the morning will be forever etched in my memory – and Mo’s too, I’m sure. A really special day.
Wonderful photo series and commentary!
A bit different to your sparkling marsh pond, eh Phil? So glad you enjoyed the misty mountains 🙂
Beautiful pairing of words and photos.
Thank you dear. I’ve been waiting for an excuse to show off these misty mountains for years. Isn’t blogging wonderful? 🙂
It is, indeed!
Belle immagini, come sempre.
Grazia mille 🙂
Love that disappearing feel into the mists as you take us down that mountain road!
Incredibly beautiful experience, Wanderlust! Mist and cloud renders everything magical. I envy you that drive…
Oh so beautuful!
“…..deep, scented forest and glades choked with illicit cardamom, we were chattering merrily, plotting our return.” Your prose makes these images all the more evocative! You took me back to our plantation days when we negotiated many a hairpin bend in thick mist quite like this 🙂
I’m soooooo sad you didn’t record those plantation days, Madhu! Really, when I think of all the extraordinary places you could have taken us – in time, and spatially! 🙂
But i know you know the terrain, and the state of the roads … 🙂
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I have nominated you for several awards, The Super Sweet Blogging Award and the Blogger of the Year 2012. If you’re interested, please check out the following link http://susartandfood.wordpress.com/2012/11/23/super-sweet-blogging-award-and-blogger- of-the-year-award-2012/
What an honour! Thank you – I’m on my way over … 🙂