God’s Garden

Wildflower hunting was one of the stated intentions of this hike. Nevertheless, I was overwhelmed by the number of little gems that we saw and had never expected to see this many. It seemed as if my whole field guide was spread out and blooming. Flowers I’d never seen before, except in my field guide, were in full bloom, and others that I did know grew in quantities I’d never seen! It was truly stunning. There was absolutely no shortage of wildflowers in the burn area of the Legion Lake Fire. Rather, they were particularly abundant and spectacular. Prickly pear and barrel cacti were also quite abundant, which was some cause for concern: I’ve been accused of “crawling around on the ground” to take pictures of wildflowers. But one encounter with spines today was enough to make me much more cautious, so after that I was careful to look before kneeling down.

IMG_6433eWhite crazyweed – Oxytropis sericea

IMG_6415eTufted milkvetch – Astragalus spatulatus

IMG_6394eDesert biscuitroot – Lomatium foeniculaceum

IMG_6384eNarrowleaf gromwell – Lithospermum incisum

IMG_6380eMeadow deathcamas – Zigadenum venenosus

IMG_6377eMissouri pincushion – Coryphantha missouriensis

IMG_6354eLow larkspur – Delphinium bicolor

IMG_6323eDarkthroat shootingstar – Dodecatheon pulchellum

IMG_6315eHood’s phlox – Phlox hoodii

IMG_6314eDowny paintbrush – Castilleja sessiliflora

IMG_6304ePrairie smoke – Geum triflorum

IMG_6299eSmall-leaf pussytoes – Antennaria parvifolia

IMG_6293eeMountain blue-eyed grass – Sisyrinchium montanum

IMG_6283eWestern wallflower – Erysimum asperum

IMG_6278eNuttall’s violet – Viola nuttallii

Other flowers not shown here were the star lily, leafy phlox, prairie golden pea, various milkvetches and legumes, including the groundplum milkvetch (a favorite of mine, with an edible bean), yellow salsify, and a number of others. A beautiful afternoon to stroll in God’s Garden.


Canada/Alaska Adventure | Entry #3

Okay, now I have a little time to go back and catch up on last week! After my first entry, we got busy in Whitehorse and there really wasn’t any good time for posting! Then when I first got to Alaska last Thursday and did have time for posting, I was frankly too tired.IMG_8063eIMG_8551eJust a summary of the events of last week: Monday through Wednesday, we shot the pilot episode of what is planned to be a web series. We filmed at three different locations – Maria’s cabin off Lake Laberge, a German bakery in Whitehorse, and a wooded trail behind a neighborhood overlooking a lake, also in Whitehorse. And yes, it was fun wandering around dressed up in Anne of Green Gables era clothing. A lot of fun. IMG_8498IMG_8523When we weren’t filming, we enjoyed Maria’s company in the evenings, lovely conversations over dinner and late into the evening, took walks along the shore of Jackfish Bay, and were also introduced to various sights and scenes of Whitehorse and the Yukon by the director, Bogna, and her husband. They took us on a “driving tour” on Wednesday evening, to a few scenic spots for pictures and walking. I couldn’t get enough of the lupines, or of the Jacob’s ladder!
IMG_8595eIMG_8332eIMG_8201eDelana had specifically requested that we stop by a Whitehorse sign for pictures, which we did, of course. Of all the pictures on the Whitehorse “welcome sign,” the one I zeroed in on was the bulldogger. And in case you were curious, there happens to be a Yukon rodeo association. We drove past it on the way to Maria’s cabin.
IMG_8651IMG_8295eThe Yukon was a brand-new adventure, and it is a place I hope to see again! Very different from the other places I have seen, with its own temperament and mood, and it was beautiful. So beautiful.



Splash of Color

Sometimes color surprises me. This sure did!
Bumblebee - bombus ternariusWent on a short hike this evening, and found this bumblebee on the banks of Battle Creek – Such a forest of dame’s rocket!

Laura Elizabeth

Botanical | Rock Clematis

These quirky little blossoms bloomed all along the rim of Hell’s Canyon, some of them still closed, others in full bloom.rock clematis mediumWhile most of them were blooming in the earth, we did find a clump of them growing in the cleft of a rock.

Laura Elizabeth

Botanical | Canada violet

If you’ve read much of my blog, you probably have picked up on the fact that I kind of love violets. This little beauty is no exception. canada violet mediumFound these in thick carpets along Hell Canyon.

Laura Elizabeth


Botanical | White Milkwort

I only saw these once along the Hell Canyon trail. They looked like little upside-down clusters of grapes!white milkwortAlmost unnoticeable next to the flashier, showier wildflowers, but these are charming.

Laura Elizabeth