Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Glorious springtimes are too quickly a fading reflection in a rearview mirror.  About mid-April, in my home parts, the rains taper off, the grass browns and the blooms of spring dry and crisp and are soon blown away on a summer’s breeze.  We look backward and wish it could’ve lasted a bit longer.

So, a visit to the high country is in order.  Just a few thousand feet in elevation above our summer-choked valleys rest meadows and glades resplendent with spring flowers, for in that high country, spring lasts from early July until just a couple of weeks before the snow flies.

 On a recent July Monday, we found ourselves wading knee deep through flowers in the Emigrant Wilderness’ Eagle Meadow.   

A long time cow camp, the Eagle Meadows gateway to the wilderness is but one of many portals into a high country that invites one to forget the present – for the present – and relish that which may have gone unnoticed only weeks before.

In composing this piece, I pulled my flower book off the shelf and began the process of identifying those specimens I’d caught with electrons. 

Then I asked myself, “Why?” 

After all, Emerson told us: “Beauty is its own excuse for being…” 

…and who am I to argue with Emerson?

Ultimately, we enjoyed our visit to the high country, spending an hour or two wading through springtime in a place where springtime seemingly never fades.


Today’s Route:  From Sonora CA, travel east on state route 108 through Twain Harte, Mi Wuk Village and Strawberry.  About thirty miles on, look for signage for the Niagara Creek ORV.  Bear right onto paved forest road 5N01.  Cross Niagara Creek continuing to watch for 5N01 signage.  Expect a dusty dirt section followed by more pavement and finally a two mile dirt run to the trailhead near the old cow camp.

The trail skirts Eagle Peak, climbs over Eagle Pass and drops into Cooper’s Pocket: our goal for a better-planned trip next time.

This post is dedicated to the memory of Jamestown teacher-buddy Trudie Loomis.
We wish it could’ve lasted longer.

© 2016
Church of the Open Road Press

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing these incredible photos. The landscape with the mountainside looks like the best place to visit. Just amazing. Have a great upcoming weekend.
    Greg Prosmushkin