Monday, June 25, 2012

Escaping the Heat on the Largest Mesa in the World


The WINs moved up to Grand Junction, but the temperatures were still pushing 100 most days. So we decided to go for a hike up on Grand Mesa, 5000 feet higher than the valley and the largest mesa in the world, at 500 square miles.


When I hike, I am easily distracted by potential photos. This is a Columbine, the Colorado state flower.


I quickly snap a shot, and look up to see everyone way ahead of me. I decided to go at my own pace.


We're having a photo contest at this gathering, and one of the categories is flowers. Not sure if this qualifies, but it's one of my favorite things to photograph.


There were several lakes that we saw along the trail.


And butterflies/moths going after the flowers.


By this point, I was about a mile behind the group...


After the hike, we went out to Lands End, where the earth just drops off a cliff.


There were some very hungry, fat-cheeked ground squirrels there. At least that's what I think they were.


Then we found out that you can take a switchback road back down to the valley, saving lots of miles and providing a fun ending to a great day!

21 comments:

Ruth said...

I think those were chipmonks...cute little buggers and usually very tame. Nice camera shots.

gumo said...

If I didn't have hiking fever before I read your post this morning, I certainly have it now. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! I am envious. Keep on hiking!

Gaelyn said...

Amazing views!

turquoisemoon said...

I'm not an RVer, just a wannabe. Really, really enjoy your blogs. Your pics should win the contest...beautiful! My favorite is the white butterfly/moth and the yellow flower. A wonderful picture.

Me and My Dog said...

Great hike - you guys must be in great shape!

Your photos are always super, today's HAVE to win in their categories. Your fellow WINs are going to have to work hard to beat your photos. :)

The flower photo I liked best today is the one with the wilted yellow flowers, the yellow butterfly and the white one in flight. Lots of interest in that one.

Brenda A. said...

I think you have the right idea stopping to take in all of natures beauty while hiking. What's the rush? Love the pics, yours are always stunning!

Sherry said...

I vote with you on ground squirrel.
Chipmunks have white stripes on their faces. Ground squirrels have white eye rings. Different stripes down their backs. Different tails. Good call!

Jeannie and Eldy said...

Great photos, enjoyed reading about your hike today. Will be glad when we get somewhere where 1) it's not 100 degree several days in a row, and 2) where we can hike!

Dave said...

Great shots and a good walk too.

RonBoyd said...

I am confused: "Then we found out that you can take a switchback road back down to the valley, saving lots of miles... " Did you hike back that way? Or is this a way to drive up (and back)?

Diana said...

Sorry, Ron - we drove up to the mesa, went on a hike, then drove to Lands End, and drove back down off the mesa. Sometimes I just assume everyone knows what I am talking about.....

Levonne said...

Sounds like a fabulous day hike. I know exactly what you mean about getting left behind when you're taking photos. That's just the way it is. Isn't it great to be with people and your camera too!?

John and Carol said...

A golden-mantled ground squirrel, to be exact.

Joe and Nancy Conrad said...

Great pictures, what a beautiful hike, I want to go too.

Paul and Marti Dahl said...

So the temps were over 100 degrees so you went hiking.

I guess you really are Super Girl! ;c)

Sondra said...

I was just gonna say what John n Carol said, and WOW those cheek pouches cant hold another nut..lol
WHAT a great HIKE you guys found...lovely..ENJOYED your photos as always, the flowers always get my attention along the trail.

Cyndi said...

Did you experience any mosquitoes? The last two times we were up there, we were there just in time for major mosquito hatches. We were miserable! We have reservations at Cobbett Lake in late July - hopefully the mosquitoes will have lessened a bit. But I agree - it IS a LOT cooler up on the GM than it is down in Grand Junction! Lovely pics.

Diana said...

Thanks for the ground squirrel identification - I knew I could count on you guys...

Cyndi - there were some mosquitoes, but they weren't horrible. Bu the time you get here they should be gone.

Barbara and Ron said...

Shame on whoever was feeding the squirrels! Pretty hike, though, and looks nice and cool.

E Squared and Mui said...

I hear you on getting easily distracted by photo subjects on a trail. This is one of the reason we prefer to travel and do things on our own :-)))

Mark said...

That was an awesome picture of the ground squirrels. Love all your pics while you are RVing.

Mark