A River at Pinson Mounds

Slowly Winding

A River at Pinson Mounds

On our most recent visit to Pinson Mounds State Park in Tennessee, we were finally able to walk on the boardwalk nature trail. On all of our past visits, the trail has been closed due to the possibility of high water. It all depends on the season, as the trail is closed the same time every year. It just happened that we finally made a trip at a different time of year. Timing is everything, you know.

We greatly enjoyed walking down along the trail through the woods. The boardwalk part of the trail was a boardwalk (obviously) elevated over the swampy areas of the park. We have been on several such trails, and they are always interesting to see to me. I do have to confess that when looking back at old photos, I sometimes have to double-check to make sure I know what I am looking at. All those boardwalks do look similar. But I still enjoy each one of them.

The Pinson Mounds boardwalk had a unique feature that one spur from the main boardwalk went out to an overview of the river. The river, if you are wondering, is the South Fork Forked Deer River. Yes, there is a North Fork Forked Deer River, too. Would you believe the North Fork is north of the South Fork? And the South Fork is south of the North Fork? Whoever named these were pretty clever, weren’t they? All of this talk about forks is making me hungry.

Laura at Pinson Mounds

Laura enjoys the view of the river at Pinson Mounds State Park

Anyway, I’m sure you are probably thinking that doesn’t look like much of a river. After all, it is quite smaller than the Mississippi River and other large rivers. To me, it almost looks more like a large stream than a small river. But knowing that they close the trail during the winter months, I am guessing that the river grows a good bit larger at times. So maybe it looks more like a river at those times.

Either way, the map calls it a river, and the park brochure calls it a river, so I call it a river. That’s good enough for me.

Big or Small

Sometimes small rivers are just as good as the big rivers. Not everything has to be big and huge to be important, right?

That is the same with us. We think of the people that get the most exposure as being the most important. But that just isn’t the case. The seemingly small background people can be just as important as those who are out front getting all of the attention.

Yes, we usually give more attention to the bigger things. Those bigger things are easier to see, and they are usually calling for our attention.

But here is the difference. The bigger things are usually doing whatever it is they are doing to get attention. The smaller things are doing what they do without ever wanting any attention. 

And really, there is nothing wrong with either one. I know what you might be thinking. Getting attention for the sake of getting attention is not necessarily a good thing. However, it can be a good thing if done for the right reason. Or in other words, to pass along the right message.

Here is an example from our church. Our preacher is up in front of the whole congregation each week. He can be seen by everyone in attendance. And that is important, because he has a good message to present. But equally important are the people who do the behind the scenes things like put the worship bulletins in the pew racks or prepare the communion trays. I don’t know who does all those behind the scenes things, but it is important that they get done. The people who do them do not do it for recognition. They just do it to serve. I believe the preacher is the same way. He really does not preach for recognition. He preaches to lead others to Jesus, not to himself.

Big rivers move water down stream. But then so do small rivers. They both accomplish the same thing, except on different scales.

Just remember that how much you accomplish is not nearly as important as the fact that you are doing what you can do, as long as you are doing it for the right reasons.

Bible Verse

Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. - Philippians 2:3

About the Photos

As you can probably see, the two photos in this post are quite different.

The first photo was taken with the fisheye lens to get as much of the surroundings in the frame as possible. The color tones are bold and saturated to present a beautiful view of the natural scene.

The second photo was taken with a prime lens to be able to get a tight focus on Laura while blurring the background. The colors are not quite as saturated as in the previous photo, because this time around the focus is on Laura.

Two different photos taken just a few moments apart in time at the same location, and with two different purposes. Pretty cool.

Photo: A single Raw exposure, processed in Photoshop. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10
Lens: Rokinon 7.5mm f/3.5 Fisheye Lens and Olympus M.Zukio 25mm f1.8
Date: April 21, 2018
Location: Pinson Mounds State Park, Tennessee

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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through Burnsland.com, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.