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five days across the beartooths

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escape in green

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Walking focuses not on the boundary lines of ownership that break the land into pieces but on the paths that function as a kind of circulatory system connecting the whole organism. Walking is, in this way, the antithesis of owning. –Rebecca Solnit
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Often rebuked, yet always back returning
To those first feelings that were born with me,
And leaving busy chase of wealth and learning
For idle dreams of things which cannot be:

To-day, I will seek not the shadowy region;
Its unsustaining vastness waxes drear;
And visions rising, legion after legion,
Bring the unreal world too strangely near.

I’ll walk, but not in old heroic traces,
And not in paths of high morality,
And not among the half-distinguished faces,
The clouded forms of long-past history.

I’ll walk where my own nature would be leading:
It vexes me to choose another guide:
Where the gray flocks in ferny glens are feeding;
Where the wild wind blows on the mountain side.

What have those lonely mountains worth revealing?
More glory and more grief than I can tell:
The earth that wakes one human heart to feeling
Can centre both the worlds of Heaven and Hell.

–Emily Bronte

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“When Freddy Fungus met Angie Algae”… Lichen sightings in the Beartooths.

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“Vagrant lichens” are functional when unattached to any substrate. It is tempting to describe them as little tumbleweeds, but tumbleweeds only tumble after they die and the stalk breaks off. The ones in my hand here will go wherever the wind takes them– pretty dynamic for what can seem like one of the dullest forms of plant life.

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Rockworm has an undeniably spectral look– like the ghost of something that came before. As near as I can tell, science literally doesn’t know how these things reproduce. All we know is that they do– and are found on all the continents except Africa.