Monday, August 07, 2006

Heading for the High Country

This past weekend I went to Lassen Volcanic National Park in northeast California. I'm not sure what the elevation was at Lake Helen where I took this picture of Lassen Peak. It wasn't cold outside, but it was a nice relief from the nearly one hundred degree heat down here in the desert. A few feet higher in elevation at the summit trailhead parking lot there were still piles of snow about fifteen feet deep. They've melted back quite a bit over the past week.

My six-year-old nephew had fun listening to the gurgling mudpots, and holding his nose near the steaming sulphorous vents, crawling around on old lava rocks, and he even had a whole lot of fun walking through an old lava vent (had bragging rights over me because it was too dark and I got the heebie jeebies and met them on the other side of the tunnel). But perhaps the most fun he had was trying to get a lizard to sit still long enough to catch. Don't worry, I wouldn't let him. I told him that they drop their tails as a life-saving technique and we didn't want them to lose their tails before a bird found them.


The little guy felt pretty comfortable when against these rocks. It was movement that scared them away.