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Sunday, July 31, 2016

BCB's Revolving Door

Son Caleb and fiancee Keli showed up about midnight Friday night. First thing Saturday morning they are ready for a hike with a "payoff." I chose to summit Red Mountain 3, that little orange nub beyond the meadow of wildflowers in the above photo, and damn near 13,000 feet. Jackpot!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Precious Gems of Turquoise and Sapphire

Above the stifling morass of a dreary, bug-infested forest, in the cool, uncluttered, wild-flowered atmosphere of Heaven on earth, lies not one, but two, alpine pool gems. One is sapphire, hemmed by a fiery crown of ragged ridge-line, the other turquoise, cupped in the bosom of a glacial cirque. So beautiful are they that neither Frost nor Yeats could ne'er pay them their due in verse. At least, I will fail in good company.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

An Imperfect Storm

In the throws of wildflower season, wading waist-deep through blossoms of shimmering purple Delphiniums, shin-deep through rainbows of neon Paintbrush, over and around incessant mounds of startling Blue Columbine, Bobbie and I are aghast at this year's apparent Super-bloom.

Monday, July 25, 2016

A Fun Adult Toy... and it's Deductible!

Last night we hosted a convergence of nomadic types at the Mine Shack. Some brought beer and goodies, others wine and goodies, the hosts, pizza, and one guy brought his new toy... a sophisticated drone, with surveillance cameras and GPS guidance software. Oh boy!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Life is a Verb

Shakespeare advised that brevity is the soul of wit. I would take it a few steps further and add that it is also the soul of all things short-lived and precious. Scarcity creates value, be it diamonds, gold, real estate, or wildflowers.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Neither Rain nor Snow nor Darkness of Clouds

It's one thing to be "caught out" above timberline, surprised by an un-forecasted thunderstorm and lightning after being assured by the weather-guessers that it would be a "fair day" in the mountains.  But it's another thing altogether to go "up there" after being forewarned that it would be best to stay home and live to hike another day.  These mountains of ours tend to make a mockery out of meteorologists' computer models. The San Juans are as unpredictable as Donald Trump's mouth, both of which tend to make fools out of anyone who tries to put them in a "box." But we went anyway, and took John Q. and Joalenn with us. I'm sure John was recalling one time a couple of years ago when he, Bobbie, and I had to run for our lives down the Bridge of Heaven Trail.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The "Halves" and the "Halve Knots"

A change of scene. The San Miguel Mountains, from Lizard Head on the far left, to Sunshine, to 14'er Wilson Peak on the far right. Hiding behind are 14'ers, El Diente and Mount Wilson. Been there; done those; lived to tell. Today, however, we will play it safe, be content with a leisurely stroll around Telluride and view them from afar.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Out of Bounds, Part II

Having a power bar lunch on the shore of Silver Lake, I bemoaned the scarcity of wildflowers to Bobbie. It was getting on into the afternoon and I was feeling spent, ready to head back to the car, maybe stop in Silverton for a 20 ounce IPA at the Avalanche Brewery.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Out of Bounds

Yeah that's me... off route again, getting high the hard way. To be honest, there was an old steel cable to hang on to, but it just seemed to get in the way. Other than this little speed bump (well, there was the snow cave... that was a little sketchy, too) we had a fantabulous hike to an old mining camp on the shores of Silver Lake, way up above Silverton, Colorado.

Standing on The Corner of Happenstance and Serendipity

Wanting a long hike, I bailed out of Petroleus Rex near timberline in lower Yankee Boy Basin; 10,800 feet. The air was fresh and cool. Wildflowers blossomed in all shades beautiful, animated by the breeze as if waving a welcome. My disposition was nothing short of excited-bordering-on-ecstatic. A day on top of the world.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Through Caleb's Lens, and "Tweaking Reality"

Our hearts soared as one from Abram's summit, smiles broad and genuine. Though we reside in Ouray, home is "up there," on high, where breath comes in desperate gasps and contentment flows like a river.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Spirit Basin, A wildflower season primer—then, a Pastel Painting (lack of) progress report

Bobbie thought the wildflowers up in Spirit Basin might be starting to bloom by now; it's aspect is open, somewhat south facing, and awash with sun. We checked it out on Tuesday and found it at about 50% from peak. In a couple more weeks it will warrant another trip :). 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Mount Abram Summit... An Alpine Emersion

On Saturday, thunderstorms and monsoonal moisture cancelled our plan to summit Mount Abram with son Caleb and his bride-in-waiting, Kelli. We decided to stay close to town and hike the Perimeter Trail, in case we needed to seek shelter at Mouses Chocolates. Sunday was iffy, too, and Bobbie had to be to work by 2:00 pm. But the "herd" was restless so we went for it, braving a wee hour departure that would make Jim roll over in his deep grave of sleep. FYI, you can sleep when you're dead :).