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Sunday, July 24, 2011
Photos from our alpine celebration!
K and I hiked toward the sky on Friday. We climbed up a mountain path carved into a mountainside.
Wildflowers dotted the mountainside, especially early spring flowers like the Globeflowers in the foreground. The snow melted from this trail only last week so the wildflowers are weeks behind their usual blooming times.
K eagerly looked toward the top, wanting to keep heading up toward the Divide.You can see her shaved belly from the ultrasound that she had the day before this hike. I forgot to put sunscreen on it but it didn't burn.
But, we had to pause for a photo with the mountain Columbines. Usually, the mountainside is covered in these delicate gems at this time of year but they're saving their full glory for later this year.
K stopped at each snowfield for a wriggle. You can see the leash. In fact, K spent most of the day on leash in this wilderness area but I briefly unsnapped it for most of the photos.
At the edges of the snowfields, Glacier Lilies bloomed.
Soon, K and I reached the Divide. K gazed at the craggy west face of the mountains.
We also gazed at the lakes on the west side of the Divide. One lake that's known for its Columbines (in the left of the photo) was still snowbound although its turquoise color barely shined through the snow.
K seemed to want to go visit that lake as her laser-like attention focused on it.
Instead, we hiked along the Divide to a lake nestled under its peaks. Surprise, surprise - we were the only ones at the lake!!!
Since we were alone, I let K take a dip. She swam around in circles, staying in the frigid water for longer than I thought was possible. You can imagine how cold the water was based on the snowfields melting into it.
She scrambled onto a boulder after swimming.
Then, she lay among the yellow Alpine Avens that dotted the ground.
Although they can't be seen in the large view of the lake, Alpine Forget-Me-Nots thrived near the lake. These tiny jewels bloom only on the alpine tundra.
All too soon, it was time to start descending. We paused for one more peaceful view to the west.
Then, we turned our view to the east and the valley that we'd be descending.
I love sharing this beauty with my K, especially since it had been such a journey to get her healthy enough to climb to the pass. Much to my delight, she didn't get even slightly sore after the hike, despite navigating alpine talus slopes with her three-toed paw for the first time. I am thrilled!
Many thanks to my good friends who let me use their fast internet connection so that I could upload the photos!