• Rainbow over Half Dome

    Yosemite

    National Park California

Mather Musings: Life and Death in the Mountains

September 15, 2012 Posted by: JF - Mather District Interpretive Ranger

Life and Death in the Mountains
    
As I walked the North Dome trail, I was struck by a subtle movement on the ground. Positioning myself to better view the scenario unfolding before me, I was startled to see an ant at the head of a very dusty bee dragging the bee along. When the ant released its grasp to reposition, I noticed the slightest twitching of the bee. It wasn't dead after all! Of course, it was only tenuously clinging to life. The ant, now re-situated, grasped a different part of the head and continued its wearisome way.

My astonishment grew as a wasp entered the scene. Landing on the bee and clutching its rear, the wasp attempted to fly in the opposite direction making the struggling bee the center of a grisly tug-o-war. A nearby ant began running frantic circles in one direction then the other before finally joining its counterpart at the head resulting in a two-against-one battle. In the end, the Goliath wasp flew off leaving the two, small ants with their still-struggling bounty.

Life often resembles this battle, and one is tugged--limp and tired--in multiple directions. We often forget to do what's best for us and find ourselves "going with the flow." How fortunate to find a renewed sense of purpose on the trail to North Dome.

mather musings




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Did You Know?

Wawona Covered Bridge

Built to connect human developments on both sides of the South Fork Merced River, the Wawona Covered Bridge is one of few covered bridges in the region. Built in 1868 by Yosemite’s first guardian, Galen Clark, the Wawona Covered Bridge boasts state significance within transportation, entertainment, and recreation contexts.