Place: Spooner Lake, Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, Nevada
Coordinates: 39.1011894, -119.908856
Length: 2.5 mikes
When our friends visited us last August we started our big California trip with three days near Lake Tahoe. On the second day Pappa Quail and the chikas joined us for an amazing hike of the Round Top-Winnemucca Lakes loop trail. On the the day they were to return home, but before that we wanted to do one more hike together. After yesterday's strenuous hike we all opted for something easier and, considering the long drive that would follow we also wanted the hike to be reasonably short. Choosing to take the eastern route we crossed over to Nevada and stopped at Spooner Lake.
At the gate to the park we've been told that there was a special event going on there and that there wasn't any parking space left. We were directed to a gravel lot outside the park where we were to leave the car and enter the park on foot. No problems, that's where we started our round the lake hike.
|Our hike as captured by my GPS|
|Spooner Lake loop trail|
It was much greener this time around, and considerably less dusty. There were also some wildflowers blooming.
|Lupine, Lupinus sp.|
|Alpine Prairie Dandelion, Nothocalais alpestris|
|Dandeion, Nothocalais sp.|
Across the water we could see the pop-up tents of the special event we were told about. We would soon find out what it was for we were headed in that direction.
there were small 'islands' in the marsh where more 'landish' plants were growing, such as rabbit brush and groundsel.
|Groundsel, Senecio sp.|
|Pied-billed Grebe, juvenile|
Once again now we were hiking in the woods. Every now and then the trail would exit the trees and we would walk a short distance out n the open.
|Oregon Checker Mallow, Cidalcea oregana|
One of these birds made itself visible for a little while, perching on the outer branches of the willow.
|Western Bog Aster, Symphyiotrichum spathulatum|
|Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel|
|Pine Drops, Pterospora andromedea|
As we neared the southern curve of the lake and closer to the closing of the circle I saw once more the reddish blanket of pond plants. This time we were close enough for me to see that these were no algae but flowering plants.
I grabbed Pappa Quail's attention and he produced me a few high zoom photos of the floating flowers. While every other bloom on the park was past its peak, these pondweed were just beginning.
|Floating Leaved Pondweed, Potamogeton natans|
|Nodding Bur Marigold, Bidens cernua|
|Quaking Aspen, Populus tremuloides|
|Osprey with prey|