Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Indian Peaks

On Sunday of last week, Connie and I went with our friends Jeremy and Monica and their two children (plus one friend) up to Boulder County for a picnic and hike in an area just east of the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area. This is a shot of the Indian Peaks from near where we parked. They had a dusting of snow from a storm a few days earlier.

Our mountain trees are mostly evergreens so we don't get the dramatic color changes seen in Eastern forests. The aspens here do change to a very bright yellow that highlights the green of the rest of the forest and thousands of people drive up from the city in September to see them.

The valley floor where we parked was at about 9,000 ft. and several granite domes like this one thrust up from it. We clambered to the tops of two of them for better views.

It was very breezy at the tops and here you see Connie, Monica, the kids, and Sadie on a ledge to get out of the wind.

Here we are hiking through an aspen grove on our way between the domes. It's interesting how neighboring groves can simultaneously be green, have turned yellow, or have already dropped their leaves. From what I understand, the roots of all the aspens in one grove are all connected so in essence each grove is one big plant.

The top of the second dome had this big notch in it that served as a big wind tunnel. As you can see it had a big pothole full of water that the dogs splashed into to get a drink. Somehow we kept the kids from falling in.


Matt Mullenix said...

Great country!

Celia said...
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mdmnm said...

Whoo-oo! Look at that snow up there. A bit further south the aspens are mid-change, locust is gone, Virginia creeper and cottonwoods (up high) are hitting their peak, and Gambel's oak is well on its way. As Matt said- great country!

Neil said...

Great pics! I've always thought that blazing aspens would be wasted in the east, but they're such a joy out here.

LabRat said...

They don't just have interconnected root systems- they're clones. The vast majority of aspen reproduction is from root suckering rather than seeds, so those big stands of aspens that all turn colors at the same time are actually armies of tree-Borgs.

Peter said...

You are sooooo lucky to live in such a beautiful area!

Isaac Nichols アイザック ニコルス said...

I was up in Rocky Mountain National Park twice last week. To see the fall colors and hear the huge bull elk bugling...God bless America!

Mark said...

Beautiful country, thanks for sharing your photos.