Not far from where I now live is a place called Water Canyon Park. It’s a small rustic park with a few picnic areas and lots of rugged grandiosity all around. I love going there to spend some quiet time, or write, or just take in the abundant beauty it offers. I’ve used this place for several scenes in my books, it just has so much to draw from. There’s quiet solitude, amazing mountains and mesas, and the feel of being more than one’s self. It lends much to a writer’s imagination and inspires that imagination to greater heights!
I can imagine pioneers of old roaming through there, seeing the wonders of the place for the first time and feeling that they’ve found a bit of paradise. I could see them there thinking they’d found a respite from their journey, or maybe even a place to stop and build a home among the tall cottonwoods, Russian olive trees, and the gnarly oak that grow there. There’s a natural spring that the pioneers could have gathered water from. I can imagine the pioneers with covered wagons circled around in the clearing getting ready for supper, with the tall skyscraper mountains standing watch behind them. They’d have to be careful around the prickly pear, but what an amazing time they would have had. Maybe they would have had squirrel stew, there’s an abundance of squirrels there now, but I don’t know about back in the old days. If not squirrel stew then maybe jack rabbit pie, that would definitely have been an option.
An excerpt from New Parish when my characters saw Water Canyon for the first time:
“The plane turned again and they flew over some mountain mesas lined with gorgeous colors of different shades of chocolaty brown, auburn, ocher and umber. Brother Michael informed the passengers that, “This is what we call the Water Canyon, it has some really good hiking trails. Some of them are quite challenging, but always rewarding.”
“It’s gorgeous,” Samantha whispered.
Sarah smiled, she could see that her mom was still in white knuckle mode, but the absolute beauty of what was below was overpowering her fear.
“Yes it is,” agreed David.”
I’ll of course attach some pictures so you can see the place I’ve been talking about…
This link shows part of Water Canyon: