“I discovered mountain rivers late, for I was a prairie child… All I knew was that it was pure delight to be where the land lifted in peaks and plunged in canyons, and to sniff air thin, spray cooled, full of pine and spruce smells, and to be so close-seeming to the improbable indigo sky. I gave my heart to the mountains the minute I stood beside the river… I was fascinated by how it sped by and yet was always there; its roar shook both the earth and me.”
– Wallace Stegner, The Sound of Mountain Water
While working on this issue, I took a long, meandering road trip through the Coast and Kootenay Mountains. We were driving to Cranbrook for a wedding, and travelling without our son allowed for spontaneous stops at the side of the road to swim in brisk lakes and take lazy detours to drink pints in ski town breweries. I have often sworn that after many years of searching, I have finally found my home in the Comox Valley. Still, I was surprised to find myself thinking, while driving down dirt roads and passing acreages with small, porch-wrapped houses, “I think I could live here.” We never know what tomorrow will bring. Our ranges are vast, but the comforting sense of both security and indifference they provide runs with them.
The mountains are magical, and the west coast of Canada’s particularly so. My own experience tells me that you don’t have to get up at the crack of dawn on a power day in order to feel that magic. You just have to carve out quiet time, find a trail, and let the forest envelop you.
Of course, we love the mountains for their drama. With their transition from difficulty, achievement, danger—and sometimes, tragedy—back to reflection and reprieve, they are the perfect background for the stories we tell about our own humanity.
The launch of this issue marks the CV Collective’s entry into year six. We also welcome a new editor, Jen Groundwater, and I am delighted to step aside and make way for another voice within these pages.
The fact that such a print magazine continues to thrive in a relatively small community is a testament to the community itself, and its willingness to support one another and the sharing of our passions. We thank you all for giving us both your time and support. I’ll see you in the mountains.