Don't Take These Amazing Woods And Mountains For Granted


May 7, 2018

Courtesy Photo

Tristan Cowie in the 2018 Pisgah Stage Race, where he fought for second place.

I'm relaxing on the beach, slipping off to sleep while listening to the sound of waves crashing against the shore. Traveling is a great way to spend time and explore. But for me, the first time I see that Blue Ridge break the horizon on my journey back, I know I am almost home.

Perspective is what we need to practice. Returning from a recent trip, I reflected about our community. I love traveling. I love experiencing new places, fresh tastes, different habits and alternative routines.

How often do we take for granted the beauty we encounter every day? The ability to spend time in nature is just minutes from our doorstep. During my own traveling, I frequently visit cities. The hustle and bustle have little in common with my home and I frequently find myself tense while navigating unfamiliar roads. I have lived in small towns like Brevard my entire life. I say hello to passersby and a short drive is just that, not something that is congested with traffic.

I think about how lucky I am to live in the place so many make a destination. Where you can wake up in the morning and head deep into the woods of Pisgah National Forest. A little corner of the world that no one else is experiencing but you. I am thankful for the water gushing over our waterfalls. I am thankful for animals that keep the ecosystems intact. I am thankful for the wind that pushes over trees and forces me to get creative with my path.

Just as when I was a newcomer to Brevard, I try to understand those who love the forest whether it be for a weekend or year-round. I might not participate in the same activities they use the forest for, but I try and understand what brings them to our area. Towns and cities are for all types of people, not just the people I pick. In the same way that Brevard drew me in over ten years ago, I feel the same excitement that those who travel here.

I encourage all to accept different people and their perspectives. We should be thankful for not living in an area where we are forced to sit in traffic all day every day. We are lucky to cool down on a hot day in the Davidson while grabbing a scoop of ice cream from Dolly's. Or to take a quick stroll downtown and see what new gear Moosetracks has on offer while sipping some Brown Bean Coffee. I would rather not be sitting in a car, stuck on some interstate, heading to a job, inside a building with no windows, stuffed into a cubicle. Squeezing in exercise while dodging suburbia. No thanks, send me home.

Courtesy Photo

Local cyclist Tristan Cowie won the 2018 Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventure Race this weekend with his partner, Asheville resident Nick Bragg.


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