Years of backpacking have taught me how to live as close to nature as possible living my the principle of "Leave the land how you found it." The sacred pine tree offers the initiate an infinite number of useful tools in the wilderness. The most essential thing to accomplish when first backpacking in the deep wilderness is to get your shelter up. You might be hungry but the weather can turn from 78 degrees to 45 degrees really quick at high altitude. Or you can easily be enjoying the blissful rays of the sun god before minutes later the rain gods empty the sky as though someone tore a gash in the sky. Besides, most tent shelters these days come with a small vestibule to cook under with a backpacking stove when Mother Nature decides to storm about in unpredictable turmoil. The last thing you want up in the alpine is to caught out in a chilling storm without shelter.
In preparing my shelter I often sweep the ground area to be used with a pine branch--the bunches of needles splitting off from the branch are great for using as a broom. Then I discover in my researching of old, dusty, websites online that pine was often used to sanctify outdoor ritual areas by sweeping the ground clean. Interesting. Yeah, I always had a feeling when I swept the ground clear for a camp site that I was making a grounding, spiritual gesture with the Earth. Especially with the strong, fresh, cold, cleansing smell it emits, like an incense offering wafting through a contemplative spiritual gathering. I'm going to remember this the next time I go backpacking. It will mean even more after learning additional information about the sacred connections.