Yesterday, I hiked and then snowshoed through over two feet of snow to reach my cabin. Heavy snow fell for the whole time. The entire Rocky Mountain landscape around me—top to bottom and side to side—was white and silent. Trees, mountains, and sky dissolved into the immediate curtains of snowfall sweeping past me.
White is not exactly a color. Not in the same way as, say, yellow. Yellow has a specific wavelength—a naming song, if you will. White, on the other hand, is a compendium of all colors. White is a mass of noise in that regard.
Yet, most of us perceive in white a certain purity. Maybe that’s because white can also be overwhelming. Consider how you must sometimes shade your eyes when you enter a white room filled with white light or open the door on a sunny snowscape.
Yesterday, white snowflakes overwhelmed me as they sifted down from a white sky, waltzed through white ghost trees and swept by me, white on white as I trudged on. The entire surround gone chill and soft and utterly flat, if not beautiful, in perfectly diffused daylight. A kind of slow motion overtook the countryside. For the whole time, I heard but a single brief sound. That, a soft murmur of running water when I crossed the mostly snowed-over creek and finally saw my cabin emerge from the snow.