Sunday, May 16, 2010

Floral Arrangements

I've been lazy about posting the last couple weeks, sorry, but here are some flowers to get us back on your good side. I'll start with some Mountain Laurel after Saturday's rain and as you go down the pics get older till the flowers at the end which are already long gone for the season.

Indian Cucumber Root

Blue-eyed Grass


Mountain Laurel, mountain fog, Scrub pine, and boulders- Old ragged beauty

Wild Columbine

Japanese Honeysuckle - Yes I know it's invasive but it's definitely a love/hate relationship. I mean it's beautiful, smells great, taste like Honey! Respect!

The bloom from a Tulip Poplar tree is usually way up in the canopy so you don't see them till they fall but if the tree's not in a forest they will bloom down low as well.

A ladybug on Barley. I put those last three pictures in cause I like em, now we'll go back inside the park and see some more stuff you might see on a hike.

Tiny Bluet flowers with an even tinier beetle!

Wild Clematis

Not a flower, but check out the bright blue sweet bee. Cool!

Two Painted Trillium and some nice shadows.

Another Painted Trillium without such harsh light

Pinxter Azaleas - Maybe the best smelling of all SNP flowers

Pink Lady Slipper Orchids


Large Flower Trillium

Monday, May 03, 2010

EHART 2010

notice the smile...

This is 10 percent luck, 20 percent skill, 15 percent concentrated power of will, 5 percent pleasure, 50 percent pain, and 100 percent reason to remember the name ... - Fort Minor

- Eastern High Angle Rescue Training 2010 had another fantastic year of rescue training last week. Shenandoah Mountain Guides was again honored to be part of the instructor cadre for this incredible week of National Park Service rescue training! Held in the high elevations of the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina this year's training conditions varied widely, from sideways snow and 70 mph wind to sunny and warm, but either way it was a huge success!

Here is what the students' (mostly NPS park rangers) looked like in the stinging snow while the the instructors in the first picture rappelled off the mile high swinging bridge at Grandfather Mountain. The weather was so brutal that the students' training was postponed for a night due to safety concerns. There were only a few instructors who demonstrated what the students would soon do in the more pleasant conditions of the next night. When students rappelled off the whistling bridge it was balmy, just above freezing, just 40 mph wind gust, a beautiful starry night.

Some perfect training conditions at the Devil's Cellar area of Table Mountain.

Over the course of the week students who started with various skill levels learned everything from basic knots to the complex details of rigging and using a raise/lower system in an emergency technical rescue application. After five chock-full days of training you can be sure that if you live on the east there is a competent rescue technician park ranger working in a park near you.

Here's a look at some of the local flora at table mountain, Mountain Rosebay is a nice spring bloomer, and was plentiful on the cliff-sides.

Taken from the same spot as the last picture, here's a look at the local fauna of the area. He's a little hard to see but there's an Eastern Fence Lizard in focus on the left side of the photo through some of the brush.

The haul team working from a safe sitting position and raising a patient (out of view) up the cliff.

A great sunset seen from Grandfather mountain.
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