11 hours ago
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Back in Uniform
Well, the snow IS pretty, if you can negotiate everything else impacted by said snow. I stepped out of my car and slipped a little on the ice/snow/slush in the parking lot. I snapped a picture from the car at 5665 feet elevation.
The empty parking lot. The trail did not open until 10:00 a.m. and when it did, visitors had to be escorted by a ranger. Maintenance was not allowed to take the power wagon up the trail although they did have chains for the tires. Instructions over the radio were to shovel the snow to the inside of the trail in case people needed to walk on that on the way down while grabbing onto the rocks. This is all very comforting stuff to hear.
Snapshot from Heart Attack.
Approaching Soda Pop. All of the darling spring plants have become "The Frozen Chosen."
This is the thermometer at Three Quarter Way. Earlier in the morning, I heard over the radio that it read 32 degrees. When I got there, it said 34 degrees. On my way back down the trail at 5:30 p.m., it said 44 degrees. The caves are about 45 degrees. One of my visitors mentioned on the tour, "You know, it seems warmer in here than outside." I smiled and nodded. For sure, Buddy, for sure!
The new "lake" at Dead Dog. The news said we've received the most moisture/precipitation/rainfall/whatever-you-want-to-call-it EVER recorded in the last 150 years and I ask myself, "How much saturation can this mountain take?" My husband laughs and reminds me of the millions of years the mountain has been around. I heard big rockfall at Dead Dog. I tried to give someone a heads up about that on the radio, but of course, my radio wouldn't transmit (other rangers can verify).
Views of Last Chance and the Exit Trail from the Arch.
While on Arch Duty, I snapped this photo of a hiker approaching the cave entrance from The Junction. I am standing at 6730 feet elevation.
This is the waterfall at Last Chance restrooms. People think the waterfalls are so pretty, but I've seen how many rocks they carry down onto the trail. One man stopped in the middle of the long red stripe below The Junction yesterday morning to photograph that waterfall. I called to him from below the red stripe, "Sir, please don't stop in the red stripe zone." He ignored me. While my heart rate increased due to stress and concern in behalf of his welfare, I called again, "Sir, you need to keep moving through the red stripe zone." He continued to ignore me. Oh well. I tried. Yes, many, many waterfalls all over the trail yesterday.