Saturday, June 21, 2014

Mt. Dana

On Friday, we spontaneously decided to go to Yosemite for the weekend and hike Mount Dana. Well, truth be told, it was my idea (my parents thought that the hike, only 5.2 miles, would take us about 3 hours or so, and then we would be free to roam around the park and the neighboring town of Lee Vining). In the end, it more than paid off.

My mother could not reach the summit due to altitude sickness. My dad had trouble breathing and almost didn't make the last 50 meters, but he managed to push through and finish. I, on the other hand, was completely fine until we turned around, after which my minor headache turned into a throbbing pulse which lasted until I fell asleep, and returned in a milder form the next day. Oh well.

Yellow-Bellied Marmots were found scampering over rocks all over Tuolumne Meadows. The photo below was taken by a curious little guy who came quite close. Photo credits to my father.

Yellow-Bellied Marmot
(Marmota flaviventris)

As for the summit itself, it marks the highest peak (or point of land in general) I have set foot on, ever. A big thanks to the kind people who took the next picture (and are found in the panorama).

Mt. Dana Summit
13,061' (3,981m)

Survey Marker

Peak Selfie with Dad

The panorama can be found HERE. (Click on the thumbnail to go into 360 degree viewing)

Sunday, June 15, 2014

First Horned Lizard

This was supposed to be posted 5 days ago, but I got lazy, so I've changed the date in the settings (Shh... Don't tell anyone).

I've never found, let alone catch, one of these lizards before, but have always wanted to. This guy was not aggressive in the least and eventually decided to relax and bask in the palm of my hand. When released, he slowly waddled over under the bush where we saw him.

Blainville's Horned Lizard
(Phrynosoma blainvillii)

Friday, June 6, 2014

SoCal Trip 05.29.14 - 06.01.14

It's taken me a while to upload some pictures on here, so (finally), here are some of my favorites.

Columbian Mammoth (Mammuthus columbi)
at Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits

Western Side-Blotched Lizard
(Uta stansburiana elegans)

Another Western Side-Blotched Lizard
(Uta stansburina elegans)

Sunset and Southern Pacific Rattlesnake
(Crotalus oreganus helleri)

Red Rock Canyon State Park

Western Forest Scorpion
(Uroctonus mordax mordax)

Sierra Fence Lizard
(Sceloporus occidentalis taylori)

Monday, May 26, 2014

GoPro + Sport Kite + Duct Tape = Dizziness

Towards the end, there are a few segments of stable stalling, I swear!

Here are some still shots.

Like father, like daughter...

Monday, May 19, 2014

Hello Again, Redwood Forests

On Mondays, I get out of school a few hours early. I took advantage of the time and went out to the Santa Cruz mountains once again today.

Western Forest Scorpion
(Uroctonus mordax)

I found a few of these under a rock near a stream. No idea what they are, but this one moved around on my hand. They seem to be some kind of terrestrial (but they may be aquatic) isopods.

The underbelly of the creature.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

The "Less Than 2 Weeks Before Summer Vacation!" Hike

Finally, summer is almost here. In less than two weeks, I will be out!
Here's some photos from my late afternoon hike at Almaden Quicksilver...

Picnic tables are the best place to relax...

Darkling Beetle in Attack Mode

Darkling Beetle Eating

Snake Got Stuck and Died?

I came upon this yesterday. A snake (gopher, I presume) tried to go through an old pipe, got stuck, couldn't go backwards, and died, I presume. I've never seen anything like this before, although the folks over at Field Herp Forum claim they see it often, especially with human trash such as nets.