Sunday, June 26, 2011

Just wandering around the local towns

Jasper and I went on a little photography adventure yesterday. We started with a trip up to Guardsman's Pass, up near the top of Deer Valley. There's still a fair amount of snow up there and Jasper was so happy to be in it again. To make it better, there were little pot guts (ground squirrels) running around for him to chase. It doesn't get much better than that.

The mix of the trees finally getting some foliage, blue skies, white snow, and granite were beautiful.

We ran across some leftovers from the winter. There are a number of cabins in the area that once the snow falls, are only accessible by snowmobile. You pack in all your supplies. I have to guess this snowmobile died on a trip and was left for summer recovery.

The area around the Montage hotel was clearing pretty quickly. We watched for a few minutes and never saw a human. I have to guess that you won't have any problems getting a vacant room.

This week they discovered a collapsed mining tunnel up on one of the ski runs. It's a good thing this normally happens in the summer instead of during ski season. They haven't figured out how deep it is or how to fill it. Welcome to a small town with 750 miles of tunnels. They have blocked the mine entrance off with fencing, but it may be worth a hike up for a peek and a photo.

As we head down to much lower elevations, we started seeing a lot of spring flowers.

These flags were lined up in preparation for the Oakley Rodeo, held over the July 4th weekend.

The snow melting from the mountains is causing quite a bit of flooding, but at least it isn't as bad as it would have been if spring had been warmer. All the low lying fields look like they should be growing rice.

Look closely. One of the horses is a bison.

The Weber River is normally more like a creek. Not now. You can see that there is only about 18" of space under the bridge, and that's a busy highway.

In places were you could normally splash around in the shallows, there were large rapids. On the left you can see a guy working on the sand bags. Utah now has hundreds of thousands of sand bags. Some are working well and others have been overrun.

There are lots of houses with water in them. You can see someone's trampoline in this picture. Their yard has become part of the river.

It's tough to see the water's flow, but it is actually flowing out from under the front door. That's never a good sign.

The only good news for those being flooded is that it looks like we may have maxed out the levels. The warm weather should cook off the bulk of the snow over the next week and then everything should dropping back to its normal summer drought.

With the cool, wet spring, everything here is much greener than normal. Grass and trees are growing more than usual. By now we are normally experiencing summer in a high altitude desert and we almost never see rain. The funny (in a sad way) thing to hear the TV news talking about the big floods and at the same time, "boy is all this growth going to be a big fire hazard when it dries out."
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