Sunday, August 17, 2014

Kodiak's Summer Wildflowers

There's no doubt that Kodiak's summer wildflowers are beautiful, but I didn't really see how truly abundant they are in certain areas of the island until recently.  I mean sure, there are lots of wildflowers that grow along the road side & we see quite a few flowers on our hikes, but on a weekend adventure last month it really hit home how much Kodiak is just teeming with wildflowers in the summer months.

We hiked up the path between the two trees behind
the "Freeee, Freeee," running with abandon Cheety
We took a drive down to Fossil Beach, which we've visited before, but this time we hiked up from the beach and explored some of the landscape over looking the cliff side.

Which was gorgeous on its own, even without taking the flowers into account.

Lupine grows all around Kodiak

As we trudged our way up the cliff side, I wasn't prepared for the view we had when we reached the top.  I know, you'd think I'd be used to the natural beauty that we're surrounded by here, but it just hasn't gotten old.  I'm still marveling even after over a year of seeing it regularly.  So once we hoofed our way up, there were these unbelievably vast fields of wildflowers that just seemed to go on and on. 

It was incredibly beautiful and fragrant.  Lupine is a very common flower around Kodiak, but when you see an endless field of them, it's pretty amazing.   It made me think of the poppy fields scene from The Wizard of Oz.  Minus the poppies, and add mountains!

It just went on and on...

Since the majority of the field was purple lupine, shades of violet dominated pretty much everywhere we looked.  As we continued along, we saw wild iris, fireweed, wild geranium, cotton grass, and many, many other varieties of flowers.  I can't even begin to identify all the different types, but I can tell you that along with the waves of purple, colors from every spectrum of the rainbow dotted the field.  It was another "wow" Kodiak moment.  I think I liked the wild Iris best:

Once we climbed up toward the bluffs, we meandered over toward a WWII bunker that was near the edge overlooking the water.  You can't swing a dead cat without stumbling on a WWII bunker on this island.  What a horrible expression.  Why would anyone be swinging a dead cat to begin with? of consciousness.  We took a rest on the concrete roof of the bunker, which had a commanding view of Ugak Island.  I don't think anyone lives on Ugak Island, but I could be wrong.  The hubby thought it would be fun to kayak over there.

Unfortunately, along with all of the gorgeous wildflowers was a pretty impressively rampant amount of pushki all over the fields we hiked through.  Do you remember what I posted about pushki when we first arrived here?  It's an intense plant that can give you a painful rash if you touch it.  I was amazed that the pooch didn't suffer through another bout of it.  Somehow, despite all the tromping through it we did, both he and the hubby managed to come out of our hike pushki rash-free.  See, I was the only one who was protected by wearing pants!

Now that we're coming to the end of summer, we'll be saying goodbye to all the wildflowers and hello to the slow transition to autumn.  Shorter days, crisper air...and harvest time. And no more green mountains.  But, you know what that means?  It means it's time to break out the slow cooker again!  And harvest cocktails, of course.  So it could be worse, right?

Ta-ta for now.

Overlooking Fossil Beach - So long, vibrant summer greens!

Fossil Beach

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