Casper Mountain has always been a place of fun and good times for me. Ever since I was a child we have picnicked there, skied there, biked and hiked, and camped there. The view from my back deck is one of the best in the world. I can see the green pines in the summer and the snow capped whiteness in the winter and she is always beautiful. The last time I was there the boys and I went up for a picnic at the falls. We were lucky enough to be the only ones enjoying her beauty that day. We ate lunch and the boys played in garden creek, the same way I use to when I was their size. Then we hiked up to the water fall itself. We sat down and watched a rock chuck playing around and listened to the wind in the trees and the birds singing to each other.
I have many stored memories of times I have been up there. The times when we would sneak in after dark as teenagers just to go sit by the falls and drink beer oh yeah we did that a few times. The time my sister, our friend and I went up in the winter and Jo fell through the snow and we had to dig her out, because she was up to her neck and we laughed all the way home. The picnics at Beartrap with my parents when dad would get board and say "lets go for a drive" we always went on the same drive up over the mountain, stop for a picnic at Beartrap, and down the back side over to coal mountain road and home. I loved the times we went up so my boyfriend at the time and my sister could ride their mountain bikes, and I would take a book and sit and read in the quiet that only a mountain can offer for hours while they explored. There was the time that my sister came home for a visit and we took the boys up to the falls for an afternoon, and all the trips to gravity hill and how fun we thought it was that the car can actually roll up hill, and the times I taken the boys there and how they are just as amazed at I was when I was their age.
I will never forget the time mom, me, and Jo went to look at the deer, they gather at the base of the mountain, and that 4 point buck came to the window looking for a hand out. I didn't have anything to feed them, but he could smell something so he stuck his head in the car. I leaned back as far as I could, knowing that if I pissed him off he could seriously hurt me, his tick infested head stretched out and he took a piece of candy that was in the console of mom's car. He pulled his head back out the window and stood there eating his candy, while the three of us laughed and laughed. Silly damn deer didn't have a clue that was bad for him, but not one of us was willing to tell him any different. I can't count how many times I have taken the boys up to watch the deer; there is something magical about garden creek deer, but only while they are at garden creek. They are almost tame there, but they move away from that spot and they are as wild as any other deer.
I could go on and on with my memories of the times I have spent enjoy my beautiful mountain, and now watching her burn and not being able to do anything about it rips my heart out. I know that Mother Nature is at work and she knows what she is doing, but that doesn't make my heart ache any less.