Weekly Photo Challenge – Fresh

” Who will tell whether the joy of breathing or walking on a bright morning and smelling the fresh air, is not worth all the suffering and effort which life implies.”

Erich Fromm



This week’s photo challenge “Fresh” is an easy one for me.  As most of the country bakes under an incredible heat wave, my visit last week to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park was a wonderful reminder of the cooling power of a forest of fresh air.



“Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Located very close to Akron and Cleveland, the park, and its Ledges Trail especially, is an oasis of peace and quiet.  Our hike with friends took quite a bit longer than most, thanks to my stopping every few steps for another photograph.



” In the end,  fresh air brings vigor, and the great spaces have a splendor of their own.”

Bertrand Russell

Yellow birch trees and eastern hemlocks mingle with huge stone cliffs, fern covered ledges, and cool dripping springs. The rocks and trees seemed almost magical – in fact I was reminded of the beauty of the Ta Prohm ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia. The depth of the forest, covered in shadows and ripe with moss and ferns, was amazing.



“Only with a leaf can I talk of the forest.”

Visar Zhiti

The trail is filled with rock formations created by fast-moving streams that flowed into the sea that covered Ohio some 300 million years ago.  Waters carved amazing crevasses throughout the park, resulting in caves, walkways and see-throughs that invite exploration and provide a cool refuge from the heat of summer.  According to a sign in one of the caves, entrance is now forbidden because the cave bats have been affected by human germs.  No worries, if there are bats I’m not about to enter!



I believe in sunshine, fresh air, friendship, calm sleep, beautiful thoughts.”

Elbert Hubbard

Beyond the magic of the quiet coolness of the forest, the brilliance of the colored rocks was a photographer’s dream.  Shimmering shades of green, gold, red and yellow were everywhere.



Study how water flows in a valley stream, smoothly and freely between the rocks.”

Morihei Ueshiba

As you can see, I was a bit carried away by the beauty all around me. Just ask my hiking companions, who I fear grew a bit weary of my exploits–fresh air or not!   If you’re ever in the area, don’t miss the natural beauty of the Ledges Trail of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park.  And if you’re not nearby, have a look for which of the many state and national parks might just be around YOUR corner of the world!



136 thoughts on “Weekly Photo Challenge – Fresh

  1. I love the stairs! Are they carved from the natural rocks that exist there? When I first saw the picture I also thought it was from Ankgor Wat. Great series!

    • Thanks Josette! Yes, it definitely reminded me of Angkor Wat also. The stone stairs in this case though are man-made! But they did a great job making them look natural, didn’t they?!

  2. Beautiful! I rarely shoot in forests as I never see interesting things to take pictures of.
    I especially like the fifth picture with all its shapes and forms.
    Have a great week,

    • Thanks Charlie! That one is my husband’s favorite as well (a male thing??). I almost didn’t take my camera for the same reason, but this place was really something! More like a journey into a forgotten world! Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Pingback: Somewhere Over the Rainbow | Weekly Photo Challenge: Fresh | SimplySage

    • Thanks for your kind words :-). It’s a beautiful place and the really interesting thing about it is how close it is to the cities. I could feel the native Americans hunting deer in the deep greenery!

      Sent from my iPad

    • Thank you Christov. The steps were such a surprise! Several readers mentioned being reminded af fairy takes. That was the thing to me that just called for a story to be written! Appreciate your visit and lovely compliment.

    • Lucky and magical–correct on both SS! It was a wonderful day with good friends. Doesn’t get much better!

      Sent from my iPad

  4. Nice post Tina…beautiful shots. It reminds me of Hocking Hills, also in Ohio. Just makes your jaw drop when you see a place like this. I’ll have to make a visit here soon…only a few hours away. Thanks for the info.

    • If you go you must let me know how you like it! Thanks for the lovely comment. Must ask my friend if they know Hocking Hills!

      Sent from my iPad

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