1662 – 1678
Crystals everywhere. White quartz most of it, layered like cake within the strata of darker rock. Smaller shards littered the forest floor, sparkling and precious.
Perhaps it was easier to see the minerals because so much of the forest was black soot. Whole swaths of pine trees were charred and colorless. I leaned my pack against a tree and my drying socks got smeared with charcoal.
I kept squatting down to touch the crystals, sort through a find a perfect magic specimen.
And the trail seemed to go uphill. All Day Long. It wasn’t, according to the elevation profile on my phone. The horizon told a different story.
Someone went to all the trouble of scraping this big dick into the dirt. Only rare hardy hikers will get to lay eyes on this masterpiece.