Hiking through Words

Reading and writing are adventures of the mind. So it makes sense that they can easily be compared to hiking or mountain climbing. Each word is a step. There will be curves and cliffs, mountains and canyons.

Arizona hiking trail

Bell Rock hiking trail

You can stay on the path or wander off in a new direction. You might get lost. Just don’t look down.

Devils Bridge looking down

You can map it all out beforehand or let yourself be surprised. Remember to look back to see how far you’ve come.

Devils Bridge trail

Arizona hiking trail

No matter where you end up, you’re better off for taking those steps. Enjoy the view.

Devils Bridge trail

“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.” – Jawaharlal Nehru

“Adventure is not outside man; it is within.” – George Eliot 

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55 thoughts on “Hiking through Words

    • Thank you! You never know where you’re going to end up when you go hiking on some of those orange paths. Most of the time it feels like Mars. 🙂

    • Thanks Carrie! It’s kind of a cliché but I wanted to show more Arizona pictures somehow. And those adventures of the mind really can feel a lot like hiking. Hopefully we’ll have a few less challenging trails ahead!

  1. Great photos Sheila and the metaphor is spot on. I think it is what I needed to hear right now as well so thank you for a wonderful and tell timed (for me) post. 🙂

  2. This was great, I love how you were able to use the (breathtakingly) beautiful pictures and weave them into a metaphor. I’ve never gotten a chance to visit Arizona, but this makes me want to!

    • Thanks AJ! It’s worth the trip. This was in the Sedona area and there are hikes everywhere around there. Utah has some great national parks that are like this too (Arches and Canyonlands) with lots incredible arch formations.

      • We love visiting the different National Parks. I will definitely have to put these on places to visit, but maybe once the kids are a little bigger. That one picture that looks like a bridge of rock would have me a nervous wreck lol.

      • It does make you feel a little dizzy at first when looking down from there! Those parks are great places for kids and you can always tell them you’re bringing them to Mars.

    • Thanks Kath! The sunsets are unbelievable because the canyon walls glow with them and different colors can be seen. The canyons always look different depending on the time of day and the slant of the light. It’s easy to take pictures out there because everything is so breathtaking.

  3. Yikes! I don’t think I could get very close to the edge, Sheila. I have a terrible fear of heights. Your photos are magnificent! I’ve been venturing off the path a bit with my writing…we’ll see where it takes me.

    • I’m sure wandering off the path will take you to great places. It’s usually more fun and interesting that way. I didn’t want to get too close to that edge either so I cheated and zoomed in a bit. 🙂

    • Thanks Susan! That means a lot coming from you because your photos are always so wonderful. It’s easy to take pictures like this when the scenery does all the work.

  4. I know you are talking about books, but the hiking parallel as shown in the photos is something I also enjoy. However, I do not willingly hike on paths with steep sides as I have fear of heights so I envy that group on the ledge. Those shots are very nice though.

    • Thank you – those steep drops can be scary, even for those who aren’t afraid of heights. But then they do make things more interesting. 🙂

    • Thank you – I mostly wanted to share some Arizona photos and figured might as well use the cliché that writing is like hiking. It’s funny that reading can be that way too – maybe a lot of things are like hiking. 🙂

    • Thanks so much – it’s the kind of straight drop that will make you dizzy but after hearing about your hiking adventures I’m sure you could handle it!

  5. Love the analogy… and the pictures. I love red rock country in the southwest. It ranks up in my favorites. I haven’t seen Arizona (besides Grand Canyon), but I’ve seen almost everything Utah and Nevada have to offer in that color scheme. Zion’s my favorite. I just got back from Moab and thought it was pretty cool too. Arches is a fun park to hike. I love the ledge pictures you have. Where is that hike?

    • This area of Arizona reminded me of the parks in Utah but with a little more vegetation. The pictures are from Devil’s Bridge near Sedona. It’s a fun hike with a bit of an uphill climb but definitely worth it. I love Zion and Arches too – I’m glad you were able to get out there!

  6. What a lovely metaphor and beautiful photos, Sheila! I like the reminder to look back at the creative journey and also to enjoy the view, creatively speaking. It’s important to take pauses during our creative endeavors, not only for critical moments and editing but to appreciate what we’ve done.

    • Thanks Letizia! That’s true and it’s the kind of thing that’s easy to forget – to do it for the love of the adventure and the view. I hope you’re having fun with your word hikes!

  7. Simply beautiful! Thank you for taking me to such beautiful places with your words and images..

  8. Beautiful photos! That is such an amazing part of the country when it comes to landscape. I hope your words continue to lead you on many adventures!

    • They’re all from hikes near Sedona so we were probably on some of the same trails. I’m guessing you saw Snoopy too. 🙂 I hope you’re in that enjoying the view stage with your soon to be published novel!

      • Isn’t it an amazing area? I loved my day there. 🙂 LOL. I’m excited about the book release, but I’m so in the day to day still. Planning the blog and book tour and proofing author goodies and revising Six Train’s sequel for betas. Every time I pick up the ARC, it feels really really good in my hands! 🙂

    • Thanks Kate – there’s always hope! 🙂 I hope you’re having fun with your reading and writing adventures!

    • Yes, there are all kinds of adventures out there. Nature always inspires. I loved your post and have had similar thoughts (Carl Sagan is one of my favorite authors). I’m glad Kath pointed you out and I’ll look forward to following along on your adventures!

  9. Wise words and lovely photos. Don’t look down is always good advise especially if one find themselves on one of those glass bridges. Now I shall always think of writing as being something that makes me like Indiana Jones.

    • Hahah – one of the great things about writing is you can do all that Indiana Jones adventure stuff without much risk of bodily harm. I haven’t tried one of those glass bridges yet. Maybe I’ll stick to the mind adventures for a while.

  10. Sometimes blogs just fall off the face of the earth. I don’t know where they go and why I haven’t read some of my faves. Thanks for stopping by my place, so I could be reminded that I haven’t been to your place in awhile.

    These photos are stunning! Reminds me of when I used to live in Arizona. I miss the desert. The red rocks. The smell of pine needles baking in the sun.

    And I disagree with Eliot: adventure is outside and within, witnessed by your photos. Something from the inside gets you walking across that vast external sliver of stone.

    • Yes, I fall off the earth often. 🙂 I’ve been trying not to blog too much since there’s never enough time for the real writing. But whenever I am around, it’s always fun to visit you. Thank you for making me laugh! I’m still smiling thinking about it. You’re right – adventure is everywhere!

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