Sunday, March 21, 2010

Happy Equinox!

Equal day length.  After today the daylight minutes will outnumber the dark and continue to gain in dominance until the summer solstice.  Spring is officially here.

To celebrate I joined the California Native Plant Society's wildflower walk along the Independence Trail.  The trail exists in the remains of the Excelsior Ditch, which moved water 25 miles from it's source on the South Yuba to the diggins at Smartsville.  Since the ditches were designed with subtle elevation differences, the old canal beds area smooth and easily accessible, and it was a good first "hike"since recovering from pneumonia.

Meandering is a good word to use to describe the speed one walks when looking at wildflowers.  We stop, gather around a wee flower, consult the book and come up with both scientific and common names.  I took pictures.  Turns out my new camera has a voice memo utility, so after I snap a pic I record the name.  No more notebook!  (This is really cool.  I love technology.  No, I'm not making squeeing sounds, really!)


Some shooting stars.  The fertilized flowers flip over and point up, the unfertilized are still pointing down in their come hither pose.

Hounds tongue, in the forget-me-not family.

A view of the South Yuba just downstream of the 49 crossing.

A California newt.  We put him back where we found him under the giant chain ferns.

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