For this blog category, “Countdown to Christmas: Our Travel Tree & Georgia State Parks,” each day between December 1 and 25, I take a pic of a state park ornament on our Travel Tree and briefly highlight that park.
Kolomoki Mounds State Park, near Blakey and the Chattahoochee River in southwest Georgia, “is the oldest and largest Woodland Indian site in the southeastern United States, occupied by Indians from 350 to 750 A.D. Georgia’s oldest great temple mound, standing 57-feet high, dominates two smaller burial mounds and several ceremonial mounds. The park’s museum is built around an excavated mound, providing an unusual setting for learning who these people were and how they lived.” (Park website)
Wow, look up there … Temple Mound is huge!
I somehow made it to the top.
“The Kolomoki Mounds site is one of the largest prehistoric mound complexes in Georgia. At the time of its highest development, from around A.D. 350 to 600, Kolomoki was perhaps one of the most populous settlements north of Mexico.” (New Georgia Encyclopedia)
The slowpoke came up too.
Up on top, everything changed.
For as Robert and I walked along the flattened, mesa-like summit of Kolomoki’s Temple Mound, surveying from on high the (now) protected state park land below, our demeanor shifted with the altitude.
The mound height allowed us no space for the usual lightheartedness we so enjoy on our state park travel explorations. For the stark high point somehow brought us low, increased the gravity, the sadness of the land, reminding us of our troubled yet often whitewashed history with Native Americans.
We circled the apex in silence for quite a while. Then descended with heavier steps than climbing up.