Saturday, July 25, 2015


Last Sunday DH and I arrived for a dinner appointment with a friendly group of campers to find they’d been having so much fun that they hadn’t even begun to prepare their evening meal.

 We decided to do a little exploring while we waited.  We’d wanted to check out a hiking trail to a place called Sheep Falls so we got on our ATV and traveled down the road and found the forest service sign telling us our goal was four miles away.  However, there were several cross roads and we missed a turn or two before we found the trail.  The way was steep and washed out so it took a while to make it to the river.
Since it was near sunset by then, we were able to see the mist rising up from the falling water in the distance.
 We could also hear the roar of water thundering down into the gorge long before we arrived.

 The angle of sunlight made a rainbow over the falls.  We were glad we’d survived the rough trip to see such a beautiful sight.  Unfortunately our little adventure took much longer than we’d planned and people back at camp were getting ready to send out a search party.  We got in trouble for not telling anyone where we went.

Thursday, July 23, 2015


I don’t bother to plant and care for flowers around our travel-trailer home near camp.  It seems every week there is some new flower blooming naturally nearby.

 By the fence in the area cleared for parking cars is a handsome patch of Fireweed. 

 This plant is called Fireweed because it crops up in burned areas after a forest fire.  It also grows in other disturbed areas, covering the scar and providing forage for grazers.

Hamish came along to demonstrate that Fireweed is usually big and tall enough to support the weight of a friendly gnome.

 Also growing tall and wild everywhere right now are stands of Goldenrod.  It is notorious for causing hay fever but the leaves were used by Native Americans to help heal their wounds and also the saddle sores on horses.

 Another yellow flower in bloom in open areas, and especially in dry soil, is the Wooly Yellow Daisy.

 This plant is covered with wooly hairs which help prevent evaporation of water from the leaves.

 Also flowering in dry areas is Wild Blue Flax.  Their seeds have a high oil content and can be roasted, dried or cooked with other foods.

 Linen is made from flax fibers.  In earlier times flax fiber was used to make cordage, rope and fishing line.

Linseed oil from flax seed is used in paint, printers’ ink and varnish.  This may explain why I saw this flower cultivated and growing thick in fields on the way to camp.

Acres of Blue Flax make for a scenic photo with an azure sky and the silhouette of the Grand Teton Mountains filling in the background.

 Along with our garden of wild flowers we have noisy busy neighbors.  This catbird sent out a chorus of “meows” from high above.

 And squirrels cuss at us from the trees when they don’t have their mouth full of pinecones.