Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Final Priest Lake Post

We haven’t got much to say and this post will reflect that.  Priest Lake has begun sending us messages and we’re listening.

First there was the hail...

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Then there were the bones of dead things...

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The air is growing cold enough to bring about the rising of steam from the lake...

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The berries are turning white...

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The newest plants are dead on arrival...

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Oh, and the wind has been blowing.  Really hard.


   O.K.  The trees aren’t moving in the photo so you’ll just have to believe us on that one.


                                 We’re counting on one hand (and one toe) now.

                                            Goodbye, Priest Lake, Idaho.
                                                     Hello, open road.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wrapping Up at Priest Lake in Idaho

Although there is a chance we’ll have some stragglers next week, this will be the end of the bulk of photos from our Priest Lake experience.

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                      The Selkirk Mountain Range and Kalispell Island in perspective.

It has been a pleasant four months in a beautiful location.  From a volunteer standpoint, if you can take a solid month of crazy in the middle of three that are so laid back you’d swear you were boondocking alone on a beautiful lake with full hook-ups, this might just be the gig for you.

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As is usual for us though we’ll move on with no intentions of returning.  There are just too many great places to be and to see.

Well, on to the photos.

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Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify this plant nor
did we ever get to see all sixty something buds (on just the top
alone) bloom.  Upon our return we found the usual ‘stubby nub’
indicative of grazing deer.

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                         Not your garden variety, the Wall Lettuce has flowers.

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This English Plantain is not the kind served in Cuban restaurants.

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                   Nor is this Rattlesnake Plantain.

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                     This highly detailed and designed moth appeared the other day.

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                                                      Ready for take-off!

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                  On a hot day, everyone is looking for a little shade.

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             Is this one done or just getting started?

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                             “Done” is sometimes just as pretty,

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                                                          and artistic.

When we arrived at Priest Lake, there was still a little snow on the ground.  Not much was green and there were a lot of ‘last years’ (READ: dried up) plants and flowers.  As the months passed identification of these remnants was made possible by this years plants blooming right along with their past due remains.

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Everything old is new again with this emerging Indian Pipe.

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                                        A Three-Banded Lady Beetle on Lupine

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                          The Smooth Scouringrush

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                   hosts an amazing display of neon.

                                      A pair of Fairy Slippers

The weather is changing.  Although it isn’t exactly cold, it is also not hot.  The leaves are already starting to fall off of the Cottonwood Trees.  As we sit down at our office they float to the ground.  There are also dandelion-like fuzzes blowing in the wind.  It’s no wonder.  Everywhere we look, plants are growing hair.

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                               Looking into the eye of the Salsify.

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          Even a ‘bad hair day’ of this caliber can turn into something uniquely beautiful.

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                                 Albeit a little stiff and rough around the edges.        

                        Some flowers are just naturally soft and frilly.

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                              As is the case with this Cornflower.

While we’re in the purple family... lately we’ve been inundated with Daisies and Asters.

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Let’s see, we wouldn’t be us if we didn’t put in yet another photo of something...

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                                           something close-up,

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                                                and one final mushroom.

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            Just another half-eaten pinecone in the forest.  Or is it?

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           We’ve never seen anything quite like the inside of this one.

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                        Rush in the Rain

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                                     Hanging on By a Thread

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                                                          Did you know??

There is a frog that waves at other frogs and another one that holds the tadpoles in its vocal sac until they are ready and then barfs them up / births them.  TRUE!

                                           On that note...  Goodbye for now.

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Monday, August 18, 2014

Kalispell Bay Picture Pages–Take 2

The wind has started blowing.  We have only two more weeks at Priest Lake before we journey onward, upward, downward, forward and sometimes even backward.

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It is anticipated that our picture files will expand by leaps and bounds once we start traveling again.  So, we will share the remaining shots from our walks here at the Kalispell Bay Boat Launch lest we get too far behind.

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These were planted near the library.  Only saw one like this so
not sure if the heart shape was a fluke or not.  Sure was pretty.

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      We still have not identified this fragrant, crazy looking, flowering?, tree / bush thingy?

We believe these are Black-Caps (note cap-like appearance when pulled off).
They sure are yummy and seedy like Raspberries.  It has been really awesome
to have our very own fresh and free berry patch.

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                      These Bear Berries have not been luring the right creatures.

   Have you ever wondered why the Dwarf Dogwood is also called Bunchberry?

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                                        Well, wonder no more.

       You’re probably tiring of berries.  Perhaps Thistle interest you more.

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Or maybe Thistle do it for you.

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If not, you can relax because Thistle be the last of the Thistles.

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While we’re looking at flowery things, it should be said that there are some small to just plain tiny flowers out there.  (READ: Forty-Somethings need their reading glasses just to see them.)

Nicole and her reading glasses have been on a mission to capture reasonable images of these small to super small flowers.  A few hundred shots later, she may not have exactly what she wants but she’s getting close (pun unintentionally intended).

One flower in particular has eluded a truly good reveal until now.  We give you…

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                Here are a few other shots for your viewing pleasure.

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                                             Prince’s Pine

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  The Rein Orchid is a tiny but delicately beautiful flower.

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Getting up close can be deceptive size wise.  The entire length of this Rein Orchid
variant, including long spur, is less than the diameter of a dime.  The flower itself
occupies less than 1/3 of that length.

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As is often the case, Nicole had her intention aimed at capturing
these tiny flowers and she didn’t notice this equally small spider
or the ant hanging out in the upper corner until later.

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And in a similarly strange twist of photography coincidences Nicole snapped this shot at the exact time an ant decided to stand up and take in the same view.  Don’t see it?

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   How about now?  Go back and look at the top left of the flower in the original photo.

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These miniscule characters are in the mint family.  We’d say they look more like
they belong in the Mick Jagger - Rolling Stones family.

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While we’re on the subject of character, these tiny Field Mint flowers have a fair share.

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These aren’t exactly flowers but any plant that creates
tiny heart shaped pendants should qualify as flowery.

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It seems that we may be leaving just a tad too early for birding.  A family of Mergansers showed up recently.  Perhaps we’ll catch a few more varieties passing through on their way North before we head everywhere but.

DSCN9999zd (6)Well, we’ve got to fly.  Seems we’re out of Earth Balance (vegan butter)!  So, we’re making an unplanned trip to the store.  That means we’re cutting this post short.

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                                         Don’t look so glum.
                            We’ll be back with more photos soon!

And if that doesn’t make you feel better just think of how excited we’ll be to not be out of Earth Balance.  Seriously, eighty miles round trip worthy happy.  That’s a lot of happy!