Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Early in the morning, I walk round Hidden Valley in the Joshua Tree National Park. A bowl of rocky hills gives the valley a slightly more benign climate than the surrounding country so the vegetation is more abundant and the air softer. It is perfectly quiet - the only other person I encounter is a large lady sitting on a rock and staring, the appropriate activity. It is a place of very rare perfection, the Garden of Eden. I lie on a rock for an hour and, apart from the wildlife, I hear only one distant plane. As I return to the narrow entry to the valley I hear human noises. A group of 20 or so young climbers in yellow helmets are assembling. A girl carries a huge bundle of purple rope on her shoulder and the boys are laughing and spitting. Their adult leader appears and begins to direct them. The large lady will soon be disturbed. Climbing is such an impiety.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 6:24 am