Summer Vacation, Part II

Last week, I promised pictures of the Vedauwoo formations. I failed. Instead, we went on ATV rides around the Pole Mountain area of the Medicine Bow National Forest in Wyoming.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
Our campsite

We had an impressive camp spot with a gorgeous view.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
View from camp

Our friend, “DJ LaLa,” found the place earlier in the day and made sure to save us room near her camper. The next day, we walked around and explored the area that was blocked off to motorized vehicles. The view was spectacular.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
View from bunker top

Around the backside, we found this:

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
Bunker entrance

The inside was a wonder of graffiti, I just wish the lighting had been better.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
Inside the bunker

Two years ago, we attended the event during the solar eclipse because the area was in the full eclipse zone. We made some new friends during that trip and stayed in touch with them. So, we hooked up with them again and went on another incredible ATV ride around the area.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
ATV riders

This time, we were in search of the beaver ponds in the area. The place is littered with them.

(C) 2019, JJ Shaun
Beaver pond in Pole Mountain recreational area, Wyoming

Taking a vacation off the beaten path lends even more experiences to your writer’s toolbox.

The stars in the sky are an excellent place to start. We were at least 20 miles from a city, and the light pollution, while present, was nothing compared with being in town. When the clouds vacated the sky, it was so black that the stars looked like diamonds scattered on black velvet. You won’t see that in the city.  Of course, camping at almost 8300 feet lends a measure of clarity to the sky that can’t be matched at a lower elevation.

The whisper of wind through the pines. The scream of a bird of prey celebrating a kill. The echo of coyotes on the hunt. Those are sounds you won’t hear in the urban cacophony of traffic and people.

Spending time in the woods with old friends and new is restoration for the soul. These last two weeks were hard but rewarding. I have a plethora of new experiences on which to base some of the scenes in my book. As with most writers, I have no doubt that some of this will end up in my book. In fact, my mind is already spinning with possibilities.

How about you? What experiences have you had that inevitably ended up in your stories?

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