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Archive for July 27th, 2007

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”                              Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities

I am home from my Colorado adventure.   If you were paying attention, and I know you were, you will realize that I am home considerably earlier than planned.   I can’t talk about it right now, mostly because I don’t know what to say.   But, I have images.  

I will let them talk for me.

meeker-and-longs-peaks.jpg

This is an image of Meeker Peak and Longs Peak taken from the top of Estes Cone.  Meeker is on the left, Longs on the right.   To get to this view, we hiked up 4.8 km that gained 606 m, after which we climbed a “stairmaster” that was 1.1 km long and rose 212 m in that distance.   My heart rate was, well, aerobic.

Along the way, I was captivated by the wood grain in the stumps of the bristlecone pines that were along the “trail.”

wood-grain.jpg

weathered-root.jpg

wooden-horse.jpg

The day after we made that hike, we motored over Trail Ridge Road.   There are wonderful images from that; all of them are in my brother’s camera because I stupidly forgot mine.   I will be posting some of them later.   There were elk, and a Mama and Papa marmot with three Child marmots.

The next day we drove up Mt. Evans.   Along the way, we saw Little Pink Elephants.   And no, we were not drunk.  Neither are you.

little-pink-elephant-head-flower.jpg

Up on top, we found the rock garden of the Master Gardener.

rock-garden.jpg

The little blue patches are Alpine Forget-me-nots.   I had Dad put his finger next to patch to give them some scale.  They smell deliciously of almond extract if you get right down close to them.

forget-me-nots.jpg

Up at the summit parking lot we experienced a visitation by a group of three Mountain Goats.   There was a park ranger there to sort of facilitate the experience.   According to him, the goats visit the summit parking area on a daily basis because it happens to be their natural salt lick.  We were lucky; they were there in the afternoon and there were no dogs around to make them uncomfortable.   This is the dominant billy of the herd on Mount Evans.

 dominant-male-mountain-goat.jpg

In the picture below, the gentleman in the red vest and hat to the far right of the image is my father.   As I was taking this picture, I mused as to which was truly the dominant old goat.

dad-and-the-boss-billygoat.jpg

Finally, a cone flower with bumble bee, taken in the meadow near Lily Lake after we descended from Estes Cone.

coneflower-with-bumblebee.jpg

Maybe tomorrow I will write more.  Maybe not.

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