Partly cloudy and 75°F.
I took these photos in mid August of this year. I was coming into Ruidoso from the north on highway 37. In June of 2012 a lightning strike started the Little Bear Fire that burned around 44,000 acres of land and 254 buildings. Three years later the land is slowly recovering.
It was heartbreaking to see all of these majestic ponderosa pines killed. The pines may or may not ever replenish, but their skeletons will be here for a long time.
The grasses and wildflowers, that were under the canopy before the fire, are now exploding with growth.
Globe mallows were covering the roadside.
Overlooking Alto and Ruidoso.
It was monsoon season and I saw mushrooms right off in our neighborhood. I had never seen this one before and didn’t get help identifying it. Very interesting. The top was velvety and firm. I cut one open and it looked like layers of cork or wood.
Very cool. Maybe I’ll figure out what it is some day…
Huge pair of gilled mushrooms.
We took a hike by Lake Bonita on the little Bonita trail, where there was plenty of flowers and water.
I got to see a leopard slug! What a great texture! it looks like it has a fingerprint on it’s head.
It was big!
There were several types of berries growing.
Gorgeous bee balm everywhere!
There is so much going on with this flower.
My little red dog appreciated the cool waters, shade and no ticks!
This campanula was really small, which surprised me.
Yellow thistle. I’d never seen this one before, so it was interesting. The foliage is much smaller than the other thistles in the area.
The buds were so fuzzy and detailed.
Douglas fir cone! I love this thing!
It’s a work of art!
As usual, I found a bunch of coral fungus.
Clematis seed pod forming. This leaves of three plant is ok to touch.
We had a wonderful time in the forest! Sorry it took me so long to post these pictures. Below, my hiking companions.