March 10, 2020

Sunrise Hike on Cole Mountain

It's starting to get warmer in central Virginia which has me more excited for upcoming hikes and scenic trail adventures. 😊

Normally, I don't prefer to hike very early in the morning. But, when catching the sunrise is the main mission, there's no other option! Last September, my college friends from Liberty University scheduled a hall trip to Cole Mountain. The mountain was an hour away from our campus which wasn’t too bad, travel-wise, except for the fact that we had to wake up super early (5 am!) if we wanted to get there and catch the sunrise in time.

The hike itself was very peaceful and scenic since the sunlight had not yet penetrated through the dense trees. I wasn’t surprised when I had to take way more breathers than everyone else in the group. Thankfully, I still had my resident shepherd for company when I fell to the back of the line. I guess all the others were super-humans with the insane ability to climb an actual mountain and not have to take any breaks! 😅

The views from the top were more than enough reward for my sweat and panting and very ruddy complexion. I was overjoyed to see the sun's soft red and orange hues still rising over the slope of the vast blue mountains. There was a breathtaking viewpoint in practically every direction.

Wildflowers are one "of my favorite things" (cue The Sound of Music soundtrack!), so I spent most of my time sitting next to large patches of white, yellow, pink and purple flowers and smiling nonstop. It truly felt like my happy place which is why I’d love to go back to Cole Mountain as soon as possible!

Of course, the primary activity that all of us social-media obsessed college students were pre-occupied with doing was taking fun little photoshoots. I’m thankful that some of my friends brought their very nice cameras with them and were willing to take pictures of everyone. That being said, my new iPhone XR by itself was an incredible camera to use, so I was able to take lots of pictures for my own amusement.

To serve a higher purpose through our fellowship, my friends and I dedicated some time at the top of Cole Mountain to praising God through song (if you don’t know who Jesus Christ is and how much He loves you, click here!). One guy brought his guitar and we sang some well-known worship songs. It was therapeutic to gather together and acknowledge our LORD as the majestic Creator and merciful Sustainer of all that we were able to behold and admire on Cole Mountain.

That concludes my appreciation post for my awesome trip to Cole Mountain! I hope you’ve enjoyed getting a glimpse into my scenic adventure. Looking back on my trip just makes me more excited for the hikes I'll be able to go on once the weather warms up sufficiently. In the meantime, for all you college students, I hope you enjoy spring break! Take time to rest, eliminate distractions, and draw near to the LORD your God. 🙌🏻

Madison Taylor


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