We’re strong believers in the phrase, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” That goes for restaurants (we’re loyal until we have a bad meal, and even then we might give the place another chance, depending…) and hikes, because if you’ve got a good thing going, why mess it up?
So in Great Basin National Park, we like to hike a little traveled trail to the Kious Basin. It doesn’t follow a stream, doesn’t climb to an amazing lookout, so it doesn’t attract others, a big reason why we like it. Plus, we never know what we might come across.
In early June, flowers were bursting open everywhere (please comment with corrections if I’ve misidentified any of them — I’m using a new field guide), like this Many-Flowered Goldeneye…
…and some purple beauties I don’t even have a guess as to their name:
As ever, we loved re-discovering the old safe (which we have learned has been opened by the park service and found to be empty)…
…and an old mine entrance, which is open only far enough to give a couple of people shelter from weather and is sealed to keep curiosity seekers from getting hurt:
But best of all? Spotting this pair of Sagebrush Lizards, sunning on a rock alongside the trail:
They must have been sleeping, because we crept up very close
before the female (she looks full term, doesn’t she?!?) scattered away, leaving the male, who gave us his most intimidating stare:
No napping for the butterflies, which made the most of the wildflowers in their neighborhood:
And back at the RV park? More critters. Birds flitted around us, sometimes landing on a branch of a nearby tree. Here’s lesson number one in observing nature: Never assume because a bird or other animal is common that it isn’t worth watching. Just look at this common House Sparrow feeding its young:
Ah! The wonders of nature!