Miles and Miles: Red Rock Canyon & Great Smoky Mountains

During spring break, I went to Las Vegas with my family. A little unconventional, but I enjoyed seeing the crazy hotels and people watching. The cigarette smoke was a little much though.

We went on a horseback riding tour one day at Red Rock Canyon, near the city. Driving there in a van, I was surprised by how barren this land was. You never see this type of space in Orlando–the road wide open in front of you. Nature not relegated to a desktop screensaver. A place where, in the struggle of man vs. wild, there’s a clear winner. I respect that.

redrockcanyon

It reminded me of seeing The Great Smoky Mountains in Gatlinburg, TN, last year. A massively different terrain though–Nevada was unforgiving, but Tennessee felt generous. I know I just explained the difference between a desert and a forrest, but it was a different kind of beauty. The Smoky Mountains made me feel fuller, more alive. It was magical, even.

smokymountains

I’ve always thought of myself as someone who wouldn’t want to live far from a major city, and that probably still holds true. But being around that sort of authenticity–the kind that can’t be packaged or labeled–changes you just a little. Your problems feel trivial. You feel more grounded.

I guess that’s why people become cowboys.

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