First Snow on the Mountain
This morning, after 48 hours of steady, misty rain at our elevation, the clouds lifted and we were able to see the first snow of the Fall.
I was eating some pre-breakfast oatmeal and looking out the picture window by our table, and I was so excited by the sight that I grabbed my camera and tripod and headed out into the field. The parting of the clouds only lasted about 15 minutes, so I was thankful to have gotten a few good shots.
Please contact me for use of any images.
In the pano, you can see the clearing around the sometimes-dry Sawyer's Village pond (now with over a foot of rainwater) and the eastern crest of the Pecos Wilderness Skyline Trail.
The major features up high from left to right:
- Gascon Point (elev. 11,726'): the bare, snowy point on the far left
- Cebolla Peak (elev. 11,879'): the sloping highpoint on the mountain
- Un-named bowl: Source of the Rito Morphy, which feeds the lake in Morphy State Park. Left-most bowl with rocky slopes surrounding.
- Enchanted Lake bowl: The alpine lake where I've taken many people to camp. It's the slightly-less rocky bowl with a prominent "Y"-shaped couloir. The lake is at 10,750'. The trail is about 7 miles and has 2,250' from our cabin porch.
- Pacheco bowl: Home of the Pacheco Lakes and Santiago Lake, source of Santiago Creek. This is the snowiest looking bowl due to the more sloping grassy sides.
- Pyramid Peak (elev. 10,597'): Interestingly, the only commonly named peak out of the bunch. It has more visible prominence from the north.
- Unnamed Point 10,177': The far-right point on the ridge between here and Santiago Creek.
While not full-season fall colors yet, there's such a variety of color to the foliage: The dark greens of the douglas fir and lodgepole pine, the lighter-tipped blue spruce, the greenish-yellow of the aspens at this elevation, and the bright orangey-yellow of those higher on the mountain.
This is just the first dusting of snow above 10k, so not too much to get excited about yet. Wait till we're digging our way out to go to town in Jan/Feb. X-)