Million-Dollar View


Standing atop Creag Choinnich just before a December sunset, the world stretches at my feet in preparation for a good night’s sleep. To the northwest, the River Dee, glinting in the afternoon light; to the northeast, Invercauld House, huddled in the gathering gloom, just beyond the reach of good photography. The sun ducks below the ridge across from my perch, and a sharp chill accompanies the deepening shade.


You know that “million-dollar view” you always hear about? This is it.

We drove up the A93 from Dunfermline to Braemar, taking a brief break from the Edinburgh crowds to enjoy the Cairmgorns for as long as the shortened days would allow. As Tammy window-shoppedOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA below, I hopped a rickety stile on the east side of the motorway and began my ascent amongst the pines.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI move quickly, pushing against the frigid air, up the steep pathway. I have little time to dawdle: it will be dark sooner than later, and we’re due back in Dunfermline tonight

Before long, I’m gasping for breath at the top of the ridge, and the spectacle overwhelms me. If I hadn’t already been out of breath from the climb, the vista would have stolen it away. I stand transfixed, cold and wonder working their way simultaneously under my skin. I have been many places and stood atop many such mountains, but never before and never since have I seen a more beautiful sight.


And then, simultaneously exhilarated by the experience and saddened at the impossibility of holding onto it forever, I descend again as the sun disappears from view. Another day, another adventure…


As always, happy travels, my friends!



2 thoughts on “Million-Dollar View

    1. JJ, for some reason that comment went to the spam. Don’t know why, but I apologize. All is now right with the world… :0) I’ve marked it, so hopefully it won’t happen again.

      Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

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