Nature Notes

Vol. IX July 1, 1931 No. 5

A Hike to Van Trump Park

A hike into Van Trump Park rewards one with a continuous array of something new, interesting -- and different! But rarely is it found as beautiful as it was a few days ago. In the dense forest, just beyond the trail's beginning at the Christine falls bridge, Canadian Dogwood, Alpine Beauty and the Coral Root - that pale pink saprophyte - were present in abundance.

sketch of sights to see along trail

Many other plants, too, vied for our attention, among them the Columbine, large clusters of Mertensia, Sweet-After-Death and Trillium. Then as the wooded slopes gave way to the rock slides the air was pierced with a peculiar, nasal "EEAK!" Closer examination revealed an interesting little animal. About the size of a large rat with little rat-like ears but with a face like a rabbit, he made an interesting study. He is a weird little fellow and we know him as the Cony or Rock Rabbit.

At the higher elevations the large beds of white Avalanche Lilies were brightened by bright red patches of Heather or, here and there, a few early Indian Paintbrushes. But the high spot of the trip was found just before these alpine meadows were reached. There one instinctively stands in admiration of Comet Falls, one of nature's masterpieces, as its waters plunge over its sheer precipice more than 300 feet high. Then with the beauty of Comet Falls still fresh in our mind we climbed higher to Mildred Point, overlooking the deep canyon below where the entire length of the Kautz Glacier can be seen as it winds down from the frigid slopes of "The Mountain" high above. And then, as though this view was insufficient to satisfy us the snowy volcanic peaks to the south - Adams and St. Helens glistened in the sunlight.

Earl Danner,
Ranger Naturalist.

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