Sunday, August 31, 2008

The place where Thunder Birds Rest Part IV

This afternoon I baked blueberry and peach muffins; yesterday I had wild blueberries for breakfast.

My husband and I drove up to the lookout at Mt McKay. In the spiritual and territorial geography of the Anishnawbe this sacred mountain is known as the Place where the Thunder Birds/Beings Rest/Nest. No matter how many times I go to this Place, there are new gifts that I receive. Although originally my husband and I were going to hike up the Chimney on the Sibley Peninsula (that is by the feet of Nanabijou aka the Sleeping Giant), instead we thought, why don't we hike up to the top of the Place Where the Thunder Birds Nest? We weren't quite sure where the trail was, but we went searching behind a field, and sure enough we saw a path opening into the forest. The trail runs up the back of the mesa.

Yes, it is very steep. Going up is not bad, but going down is a bit tricky with the scree and stones and slope. The thunder storm and heavy rains the day before would've made of the trail a raging waterfall. Evidence of the water's sculpting power was at your feet. You need good shoes with excellent lateral support for this climb. If you have bum knees, don't consider the climb as going down would be hell. It was about 27 degrees C. On our way down we met a niece and her uncle going up. They were sweating profusely.

This is the flat rock top of The Place, looking southeast towards Nanabijou. There were junipers creeping about the rocks, jackpines gnarled by the winds, saskatoon shrubs,

and blue oh-so-blue blueberry bushes.

It was an amazing morning. A blue translucence shimmered from the lake. Pie Island was wrapped in blue, too. Looking out across this spectacular vista, I see why so many people love the colours blue and green. They are soothing, rich, majestic, earthy yet supranatural. The ridge on the right is very close to the hidden cove I've already told you about, which is also part of this thundering territory.

A conspiracy of ravens circled and soared along the cliff edge. A few flew off to battle with some hawks vying for control of the skies in front of the cliffs. The steady beat of the ravens' powerful wings cut the air, whoooosh, whoooosh, traveling with the wind to where I stood. Where I stood, you can see across Thunder Bay to the feet of Nanabijou where the Chimney is. That's another hike, for another day. Another direction.

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