Eastern Sierras, California
The trail head to Parker Lake starts at about 7,600 feet. The trail climbs two miles to Parker Lake at 8,350 feet.
Most of the elevation gain occurs in the first 1/2 mile. I'm surprised by the variety and abundance of wildflowers on the two mile trail.
The last 1/2 mile of the trail winds though thick forest along the stream that flows out of Lake Parker. We see trout swimming in the stream. They taught us about chiaroscuro in Humanities 101. You can see it in the darkened forest where the sun shines though to the stream.
The promised waterfall at Lake Parker is about two miles away so I have to zoom it. Now I can see that it's flowing though a snowbank.
The flowers and cool air make it feel like Spring. Spring comes late here and winter comes early. The meadows were probably deep in snow a few weeks ago.
This flower grows in damp places near the stream and lake.
On the first part of the hike you get a good view on Mono Lake ten miles away. You can see the relatively new black volcanic cinder cone island in the left part of the picture.
This is our first hike in over a year, since I injured my heel. I huff and puff a lot on the climb up. I have to stop frequently to catch my breath and let my heart stop pounding. Mrs. Phred carries the backpack and patiently stops every so often to allow me to catch up.
Back at camp, George and Danielle give us four of their trout. George cuts up potatoes and onions, adds some thyme and oil, then wraps the mixture in tinfoil for the grill. We eat and drink wine until late, trading stories. Danielle is French. They met in Naples in the mid-1960s when he was in the Navy.