Prescribed Burns

My last post described the twin events of spring in the forests of Idaho's central mountains: blooming wildflowers and prescribed burns. By pure happenstance, the Forest Service decided to do prescribed burns in my two favored locations for springtime runs and hikes with my dogs: in the forest just a mile above my house, and… Continue reading Prescribed Burns

Point of View

I continue pursuing emerging wildflowers as spring progresses in Idaho's mountains. I'm obsessed. I dream of a quiet man who explains nothing and defends nothing, but only knows where the rarest wildflowers are blooming, and who goes, and finds that he is smiling not by his own will.Wendell Berry A friend, Karen S, recently recommended… Continue reading Point of View

Dog Photobombs VII: Late May through July, 2020.

Peak wildflower season in the mountains. I could use a little brightness right now so I'm setting the dog photobomb wayback machine to springtime in the mountains. Enjoy! Look at the cute tree swallow! Not technically a dog bomb.... Incoming on the left... ...moving through. My favorite, a Lewis's monkeyflower on my little monkey, Finn.… Continue reading Dog Photobombs VII: Late May through July, 2020.

Fences VII – Spring at High Elevation

My previous posts featuring rural fences were all winter scenes. I hadn't thought about a spring or summer rendition because I rarely see fences on the forest trails my dogs and I spend our time on, but this morning, as we finished a high-elevation mountain hike I was struck by the beauty of stacked log… Continue reading Fences VII – Spring at High Elevation

So Long, Spring, ‘Till Next Time

Spring officially ends June 19th this year. It's always a little sad saying goodbye, watching nature's exuberant bursts of growth and color wane during the hotter and drier months of summer. Where I live, at 4,000 feet in the mountains of central Idaho, spring starts arriving in April and doesn't really gain steam until May… Continue reading So Long, Spring, ‘Till Next Time

Thrilled by Trillium

I first became acquainted with trillium wildflowers in the forests of western Washington. At the lower elevations of the Cascade foothills where I did so much trail running before moving to Idaho, they were the first wildflower of spring, adding bright splashes of white and green near the ground where they grew under the tall… Continue reading Thrilled by Trillium

Flax: A Mix of Beauty and History

My second summer here in Idaho, in 2006, I bought some wildflower seed meant for mountain climates and tossed it out along my driveway. I didn’t know what to expect. I hoped for the best, especially since it was ridiculously expensive and I was living on borrowed funds. I was disappointed. That first summer very… Continue reading Flax: A Mix of Beauty and History

Thinking of John Muir

I didn't have a plan for this morning. Usually I go to bed with an idea of whether the dogs and I will go for a run the next morning, and where. We run three or four days each week, and go for a walk the other mornings. Walks require much less planning. Rarely, if… Continue reading Thinking of John Muir

Tuck and Roll (and More Wildflowers)

Friday May 8th was a gorgeous spring morning in Idaho's mountains: clear skies; brisk temperatures hovering around freezing; early sun rising above the eastern horizon, breaking through the branches of the tall forest trees. My dog Conall and I were exploring single-track dirt trails that are finally emerging from their long snow-covered winter sleep. A… Continue reading Tuck and Roll (and More Wildflowers)

Signs of Spring in the Mountains

I was born and raised in a suburb of Seattle, where the climate is "temperate." That's a kind way of saying it rains (or drizzles) a lot and the temperature variation throughout the seasons is small. It rarely falls below freezing or rises above 90F. It's cloudy most of the time, even when it isn't… Continue reading Signs of Spring in the Mountains