Picture This: Western View of the Cairngorm Mountains

by Keith Savage · 10 comments

Nethy Bridge faded into the woods behind us as we drove south along the A9 to Dalwhinnie. The gray sky dissolved in the east, revealing the Cairngorm Mountains holding court with a crowd of coniferous and deciduous trees. Snow crowned the peaks and glimmered in the sudden sunshine. We pulled our steed onto the roadside, and I bolted out like some paparazzi of nature, camera in hand and firing. It was a moment, so special and unbelievably common in Scotland, that pulled me into the pages of my library of fantasy novels.

What is magic but the inexplicable, our wish to defy the laws of nature? The worlds of fantasy authors are visions of our own with one eye closed. Mount Doom? How about Cairn Gorm. This vision was a reminder that nature itself is magic, though we’ve seen it and wrapped it in explanations like a toddler wrapping Christmas presents.

holiday scotlandNo Gravatar February 6, 2012 at 11:26 AM

Ah Nethy Bridge my favourite village, the place where i will be living in not the too distant future i hope

Keith SavageNo Gravatar February 6, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Beautiful little town. We loved it!

Chianti VillasNo Gravatar September 8, 2011 at 12:00 AM

This just looks so stunning and beautiful! Awesome picture taken.

MikeachimNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 11:14 AM

I’ve made a pact with myself that I don’t read the upcoming George RR Martin “Song of Ice & Fire” installment until I’m surrounded by such scenery. 😉

I love how insignificant the deep highlands make me feel, every time. All my worries and woes? Piffling. It’s grounding, in the deepest, most literal sense. And humbling. I remember you said in your Authenticity article a while back, travelers yearn to be part of something without being the reason for it. Landscapes like this impart such a feeling in me. I’m just another Joe, with so much to learn.

And that’s good for the soul.

Keith SavageNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Oooh, that’s a good pact. Sadly, I won’t be able to wait that long, methinks.

Most of Scotland makes me feel insignificant, and somehow that gives me hope. Perhaps it makes me feel like I’m not responsible for something great, which removes a subtle yet omnipresent stress and is actually kind of sad.

AliNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 12:40 AM

Keith, I know I don’t comment much, but damn your pictures are gorgeous!

Keith SavageNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 1:35 PM

Thanks Ali! I’m doing my best to wring out everything I can from this Canon PowerShot. Have to admit I’ve been considering a DSLR.

NatalieNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 12:05 AM

Love this picture. The green mountains with the blue sky is just stunning

EmmaNo Gravatar June 24, 2011 at 5:41 PM

That looks like a painting! Awesome

Keith SavageNo Gravatar June 25, 2011 at 1:34 PM

Yeah, not quite sure how this ended up on my camera to be honest.

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