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Old May 26, 2011, 6:43 AM   #1
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Default BirchCamp Lake

Was out at Rocky Fork Wilderness last Saturday, for a good 12 mile hike in the high country. This 10,000 acre wilderness is rich in natural diversity, and full of old unmaintained trails. We decided to take the hike from Lower Higgins Creek on up to Birchcamp Prong Lake.

There was plenty of wildlife out on the trail, but my dogs scared away all but the slowest of them!
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:44 AM   #2
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Rosebay Rhododendron was at peak bloom at the lower elevations on Saturday. Hard to photograph in the bright sun - what do you think of these attempts?
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:45 AM   #3
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The main falls on Lower Higgins Creek was flowing well, in fact, about the fullest we've ever seen! Too much bright sun for a good photo on the way up, but did stop on the (later afternoon) return trip to get some shaded shots.
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:46 AM   #4
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Soon our trail begain the long steady climb up from the Lower Higgins Creek valley up towards Frozen Knob. Here the ferns are lush and green...
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:47 AM   #5
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And, at higher elevations, some of the early-season plants are still blooming. Here's an odd one called Lousewort. "Wort" means plant, especially a useful plant. Lousewort was thought to be good to get rid of lice!!
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:50 AM   #6
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Pink Lady's Slippers are finished with their blooms at the lower elevations, but we did find an amazing patch of them, still in bloom, at about 4,000 feet. There were probably over 50 plants in bloom in one small stretch of trail - far more abundant than we've ever seen!

(I promise these will be the LAST photos of Pink Lady's Slipper that I post this year - hope you have not been bored with the many photos already...)
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:53 AM   #7
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Years ago, before this was public land, and before it almost became a housing devlopment, it was timbered land. The logging company established a small lake on Birchcamp Prong, as a source of water for fire supression. Our goal for the hike was to check out the lake, to enjoy but also the see if it might be a good spot for rare odonates.

We enjoyed some fine views of this little lake, but did not see any odonates (probably too cold and early in the season at this elevation).
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Old May 26, 2011, 6:55 AM   #8
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Return trip was easy and uneventful. We are hoping to return later in the season for another survey of the lake.

Hope you enjoyed the hike, and will share your comments, critique & suggestions!
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Old May 26, 2011, 8:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mole View Post
Rosebay Rhododendron was at peak bloom at the lower elevations on Saturday. Hard to photograph in the bright sun - what do you think of these attempts?
I think the lighting on them looks great. I am wondering if you did anything to make the background dark or was it a result of the ambient lighting/depth of field?

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Old May 26, 2011, 8:47 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mole View Post
Pink Lady's Slippers are finished with their blooms at the lower elevations, but we did find an amazing patch of them, still in bloom, at about 4,000 feet. There were probably over 50 plants in bloom in one small stretch of trail - far more abundant than we've ever seen!

(I promise these will be the LAST photos of Pink Lady's Slipper that I post this year - hope you have not been bored with the many photos already...)
Never boring, always a pleasure to "travel" with you.

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