I wind up working quite a bit. I love my work and usually don't mind really. Two of my "fun" days this summer were climbing peaks and checking out the alpine vegetation... (pictures to follow).
I grew-up in Pollock Pines in the 1970's We moved there from the peninsula when I was in 5th grade - I thought I'd died and gone to heaven... snakes, frogs, trees to climb, creeks, rocky rivers, etc... We had an ecosystem / arboretum behind Pinewood school and teachers who loved the woods (two were back-country forest rangers out of Wrights Lake).
Desolation Wilderness was my old "stompin' ground". Soooo... I begged to go when my daughters' nordic comp-team said they were hiking Pyramid Peak. We piled in the vans for a fun ride over and hit the trail at Horsetail Falls. The pace was quick but I wasn't dead last. The falls were raging as we picked our way up the west side. Penstemon and Spiraea were in bloom. The highlights of the hike were the hanging gardens on some of the cliffs with clear water sheeting off clean salt and pepper granite and flowing around little islands of luch vegetation before disappearing over the next ledge. And, the final pitch up a boulder field to an amazing view from the peak.
Then those crazy people RAN down the south side. I wanted to stop every few seconds to take pictures of the wildflowers, but the team would have been gone! The Phlox and Polemonium were is full bloom.
The other hike was late in the season up Mt. Rose for the first time. I was in awe of the huge diversity of plants in the rocks near the top. I suppose it is a true fellfield, an alpine tundra. If you've never been, I suggest you make the effort. It is not a hard hike but if you try to run near the top, you can feel the altitude. The cascade waterfall halfway up is a nice spot to rest and there are lupine there over 6'tall.
Posted on Mon, August 23, 2010
by Eric Larusson filed under