Friday, July 23, 2010

An Alaskan Summer Day

It is very difficult for me to get any sense of what season we are in. We have had many cool wet days, which reminds me of spring. The weather man on a local station says Alaska is getting an early fall. The first snowfall may be a month or so away. Animals are busy eating and storing food for the winter, which we saw in the park Wednesday. Then again, a lot of wildflowers are out and berries are starting to ripen. Not only are we finding blueberries to eat while hiking, but yesterday we found some ripe raspberries. And the little bee drawing nectar from a yarrow flower, in the picture below, presented a scene more common in the summer time.
We were not sure what the weather was going to do yesterday. At least it was not raining, so we headed out for a hike on a path across the highway from where we are parked. Initially we came upon a big gravel pit which possibly the highway department is mining for its use. Scattered around that area are many rock and large boulders. It was tempting to pick up the many beautiful agates lying around, but that is something which I am not doing anymore. To satisfy myself, I did pocket one small stone. The whole area seemed to have the debris of a glacial moraine; such as gravel,sand and silt. Also scattered around were a few large boulders as the one seen in the picture below. That boulder could be a glacial erratic, rock which had been avalanched onto an ancient glacier and transported beyond its source. John was very fascinated  with the structural features of the rock, as well as the large crystals lying on its surface.
After traversing through the dry rocky area we soon found ourselves hiking into a forest. Humans had been through this area before; we noted an old sofa bed sitting a short distance from our path. After climbing up a couple of hills we were rewarded with the sight of a beautiful valley spread out below us.

No comments:

Post a Comment