Monday, July 14, 2014

Snowman on the 4th of July

July 4

I'll bet everybody is at a picnic today and has completely forgotten about the National Parks.  Right?

We head out in the cool of the morning for a hike around String Lake within Grand Teton NP.  This particular lake is sandwiched between Jenny Lake and Leigh Lake at the foot of the mountain range.  

Non-motor boating is allowed and there are plenty of people in kayaks and those boards you stand on and paddle.  One family is forcing their grandpa to give it a try, letting loose a speedo'ed, grumbling mountain man onto the water.  He gets maybe ten feet from shore before shakily paddling back, muttering into his voluminous beard.  I have a picture, but you'd be sorry.

We don't really have a set course for our hike and follow the trail markers left or right as we are in the mood.  

Interesting plant life abounds, although most of it I cannot identify.  

Higher up on the mountain we encounter patches of snow.  

When you gotta go....

A snowman on the 4th of July?  Why not.

Avalanche damage from the winter points all of the trees downhill.  I try to imagine how deep the snow must have been to cause the trees to snap so high off the ground.   

All sorts of plants I have been dreaming of for my future garden crop up in their wild forms.

This flower looks like a cross between an Iris and an Orchid.  Any botanists know what it is?  

If not, I will have to make up a name.  Oris?  Irchid?  

Maybe I should leave it to the professionals.  

We make our way back down the mountain, past the lake, over a clear, deep stream and to our car.  

We take the scenic drive around Jenny Lake and are not disappointed by the views.

On the way back to camp, we discover just how many people are not at picnics today.  This is the road to get to the parking lot for Jenny Lake.  The parking lot itself is to the left and not visible in this photo.

Yuck.  Too many people.  Let's go back to the pugs.

Otis and Murray are, as usual, so happy we have returned to them and celebrate with a good whizz on every shrub near our site.

It is a comfort to know that if the dogs ever get lost, they will stick together.  Murray has no sense whatsoever, but is completely dependent on Otis who is the level-headed of the two, following him wherever he goes.  

I have done experiments where I put Otis back in the Airstream (while Murray isn't looking), and then duck behind a bush.  Poor Murray has no ability to make decisions and just stands there until somebody comes to get him.

But he is an impish, adorable critter and provides constant entertainment.

Another stellar sunset ushers in another clear night overlooking the Grand Tetons.


  1. I think the blue flower might be a larkspur.

    1. Thank you Anonymous! You just saved that flower from an atrocious name!