Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Friday, April 22, 2011

Diamond Desert

I stayed late after the IBCM conference to go out and see springtime in the desert. I got to spend a delightful day hiking and insect watching out by Desert Hot Springs.

The weather was mostly sunny but cool, and there was even rain and snow in the nearby mountains. It made for marginal insect viewing. On the other hand, I got to see a really nice rainbow.

The spring flowers were beautiful. I was drawn to the above hillside, which was covered with desert dandelion and desert chickory.

The desert dandelion flowers were being visited by a beautiful little moth in the genus Heliolonche. The air temperature was cool enough that they were readily approachable for photography. I must have seen about a dozen.

There's something about hiking alone out in the desert that I find very restorative. The day after this hike, I met up with my friend Dr. Steve from Los Angeles, and we hiked together in the palm canyons. I'll try to get photos from that day up soon.

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At 01:07, Blogger Ur-spo said...

I was not aware you ever hiked alone; isn't that a bit dangerous? viz. getting lost, injured, or attacked by desert animals or abducted by aliens?

At 07:03, Blogger Doug Taron said...

I don't go out alone if I'm going to be someplace excessively remote, and I always let somebody know where I will be and when I expect to return. I always go out prepared- extra water and the like. Beyond that, I don't fret excessively about risk. Besides, the last time I was abducted by aliens I had a great time. They really know how to party.

At 13:54, Anonymous Mark H said...

I WISH I'd been there for that hike...I grew UP in SE Oregon desert (High Plains Desert) as you know, and didn't much care about the grand place I lived in then. Just a "tiny" bit older now, and still NOT having ever been to these desert exotic places with someone knowledgeable to educate me....I would love it... as we said earlier, also, We HAD been there IN Riverside....those SNOW peaks were beautiful. Maybe sometime we'll get to hike with you without a Dog swimming to distract us.

At 15:29, Blogger Mike said...

Love that moth picture especially!


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