Shaconage – A Journey on the Blue Ridge Parkway

by Teri Leigh Teed


As we approach the Spring Equinox in two days, I reflected on a visit to the Blue Ridge Parkway a few winters ago. In mid-afternoon on a Christmas Day, I looked across Sylva and saw that a great fog and clouds had settled on the mountains in the distance, so I decided to pack my camera and head to the Parkway entrance off Hwy 23/74 at Balsam.

It was a fortuitous choice. The fog shrouded the road and most of the surroundings completely on the Parkway. Fog is a metaphor for trust in the spiritual community. As I drove through the fog, I stopped at each scenic viewpoint and happily photographed the surreal winter atmosphere.

From the pinnacle of Waterrock Knob to the junction of Hwy 19, I was the sole human observer on that portion of the Parkway.  I felt safe surrounded by a strong angelic presence. Truly a gift from God!

It will be four years this June since I moved to the Blue Ridge Mountains. The time seems to have passed so quickly, and I marvel each morning at the beauty of this special place and the people. My home sits near the top of a mountain in the Greens Creek community, and each day I count my blessings to be so fortunate to live here.

In the Cherokee language, Shaconage means “land of the blue smoke”. Hence how the Great Smoky Mountains got their name. The Cherokees have a wonderful culture and much wisdom to share with us all. I feel blessed to live in an area that was once a place of healing for the Cherokees.

Tonight as the sky turns from a magnificent sunset of pink and soft blue hues to night, I will look over Sylva toward the mountains and the Parkway and the light that shines from Mt. Lynn Lowry. A beacon of hope to all who look for the light in the darkness.

And I will thank all the peaceful spirits that live here, and the Nantahala Forest for allowing me to dwell in her sacred space.


Featured image “Fog over Waterrock Knob”, fine art photograph by Teri Leigh Teed


Come along now for a brief and enchanting journey in my video featuring photographs from the “Healing Spirit Art” portfolio:  “Shaconage – A Journey on the Blue Ridge Parkway”



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Healing Spirit Art  by  Teri Leigh Teed

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