I wrote of the wheat field as metaphor for life, and we do walk from one patch to another, searching for better bites. The mountain, to me, offers an escape in perspective. Climbing above, you see more than a bird's eye view, if not quite a God's eye view. The wheat field spreads out before you, and I mean that literally and figuratively.
In the literal sense, you have the view of the valley. In Montana, we walked a short trail to get a clear view of the Flat Head Valley. The city of Kalispell, straight ahead, was only part of that view. To the north I could see the break in the Rocky Mountains that was the gateway to Glacier National Park, and even imagined an ancient river rushing down. To the south was the beginning of Flathead Lake, stretching far out of view. This wasn't just a pretty panorama though. In the valley, on the street, and on the crown of our heads, storms fall. Amid rain, our world is rain. But take the high road and you see that it is only raining, say, over by Farm to Market Road, and not at the airport. In our wheat field, at any given moment, we may be stuck in a barren patch. But go up, and look down, and you see the possibilities.
Figuratively, I am in love with the symbolism of the mountain-top. In 1818, Caspar David Friedrich painted "Wanderer above the Sea and Fog." Below him are the symbols of Germany, it's geography, before there was a Germany. The man in the painting, the wanderer, is reflecting on his self, and his would-be country in arguably the most significant era of change in human history. In this case on the mountain, you don't see what is literally true. Neither Flathead Lake nor the sprawling footprint of Brighton. Rather, all your hopes, your fears, your loves, and your past come rushing up the hills as rising fog. Ideally, the fog clears and you get a view you can understand. Then you can, as the Allman Brothers say, "climb down off the hilltop baby, get back in the race."