the Awe of Lake Alta (part 1)

Queenstown is a fantastic place with some amazing scenery which can leave you in a state of awe

It came to me as I was walking up the ski road – the “wow” moment, the “yes! this is why I packed up my stuff and left Auckland”.  I am doing the right thing, peace and contentment surround me.

I look across and see the Southern Alps – crisp, blue and expansive.  I look up, the jagged rock peaks of my mountain were many.  Each one looked a challenge but was only a minor part of the bigger picture.

I was at The Remarkables Ski area heading up to the glacial cirque, Lake Alta. It was about 9 am and I had my breakfast in my pack.  It was great to have a travelling companion – Craig.  Craig had a better camera so could take better photos than me.  His presence allowed me to climb further up the mountain than if I was on my own and I was able to watch him ride down the mountain from The Remarkables Ski area.

Life on the mountain was plentiful though micro.  Grasshoppers hopped and the plant life was taking advantage of the long sunny days (over 15 hours in mid-summer) and water seem to seep from somewhere.

The wind was light so I was able to hear sounds, the distant helicopters and small planes on scenic flights.  The voices of two male trampers.  We could hear them but could not see them.  Most interesting was the snow crunch of the footsteps of a sole tramper down in the valley.

I was in a good place.  While I felt the splendour, Craig felt the energy from the quartz still withheld by the rocks.

The following morning I was listening to a podcast.  It was a rather long podcast and I had heard the beginning several times.  This time I went to the last 20 minutes where the topic was awe.  Perhaps my “wow” moment was awe.

Awe is an emotion and a current topic of science.  Amongst other ways, it can be induced by the grandeur of the natural world, experiencing something which demonstrates the relative smallness of one self.  Awe makes us question the way we view the world and life.  Furthermore, awe is apparently good for health by decreasing  stress within the body, creating more connectedness with our surroundings and community, it has been shown to increase the perception of time and brings you into the now or present moment.  All of this gives a better life experience.

My time in at Lake Alta definitely contained magnificence and gave confirmation about my lifestyle. Thank you to the inspiring people who put me on this path – Lorna, Carol, Jaya and Lynn.  Some of you would be totally unaware of your input.

Part 2 of the Awe and Lake Alta, the visuals, coming soon.

Further reading on awe – why we feel it and how to cultivate it

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Author: Karen M @ Foodproof

PhD student, kiwi, blogger, multi-potentialite, science writer, dancer, analyst, food lover

5 thoughts on “the Awe of Lake Alta (part 1)”

  1. What a challenging subject awe is. I looked at the link How to cultivate it and need to ponder it more. As awe is defined as vast and overwhelming & often a ‘ping’ moment, its been a while since I was filled with awe. This needs to change! Thank you for the challenge. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am not sure if it is easy to cultivate awe. I visited the same area five days later and while I loved being there I did not feel the same awe. What was important to mean was that I was able to recognise and be in the “wow” moment.
      The next day I was pondering over the writing angle for this blog when I started listening to the end of The Good Life Project podcast. It gave me the solution to my writing angle – a serendipitous moment.


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