Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Lookout Mountain

Even with a broken wrist and Zak and Taryn's company, Wednesday was still hike day! I did ratchet down the degree of difficulty quite a bit, as we just went to Lookout Mountain.
The Nature Center was FANTASTIC. The place looked like it had just been built yesterday -- completely spotless and everything in working order. Recycled materials throughout and helpful staff. The kids especially enjoyed putting on headphones and listening to different animal sounds.
Zak brought our old digital camera and took this fetching portrait of Taryn. Everybody had granola bars, so I'm not sure why she insisted on eating the map.
Of course, put a camera in the hands of any 7-year-old and you're inevitably going to get a picture like this.
A short hike -- less than a mile and a half for the whole loop -- but lots of wildflowers. Mountain Harebell here, as identified by a member of the Nature Center staff.
Yarrow, I think. Taryn said her favorite part of the hike was "when you and Zak took pictures of the flowers."
Definitely Blue Flax.
The view to the northwest. Oddly, I couldn't find an unobstructed overlook.
Downtown Denver just visible through the haze to the east.
If I needed to put a radio tower somewhere, I'd probably pick Lookout Mountain, too.
Another Zak shot, and a darned good one. These Variable Checkerspots were all over the place.
The Nature Center staff were at a complete loss to identify this small wildflower, and so am I. UPDATE: Jefferson County Weed and Pest Management Specialist Alicia Doran e-mailed me with a positive ID -- Orange agoseris. Thanks, Alicia!
Sulphur Flower.
Another Checkerspot on a daisy.
And yet another. Hard NOT to take pictures of such colorful and willing subjects (insert Paris Hilton joke here).
My largest wildlife sighting yet this season -- an actual deer! Like how I focused on the weeds in the foreground effect?
We actually spent three hours there between potty breaks, resting on benches, exploring the Nature Center and actual hiking. A fairly flat walk -- I highly recommend it if you have little ones!

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