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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

Mud Lake

July 12th, 2011 · No Comments

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A late spring and early summer rains here means many wildflowers. My friend Sharon and I went in search of them yesterday around Mud Lake. We found them.

Mud Lake is a misnomer, unless it refers to the bottom of the lake, which we didn’t check. A lot more people would go to Mud Lake if it had a nice alliterative name like Pleasant Pond. But that’s okay with me, because we enjoyed being the only people there yesterday morning.

We go hiking in the morning because it rains practically every afternoon here now. We appreciate having heavier rain than usual, particularly when so much of our country, including southeastern Colorado, continues to suffer from years of drought.

At an elevation ranging from 8,400 to 8,600 feet, Mud Lake is 18 miles west of Boulder on the road to Caribou Ranch, where Sharon and I have been many times. But each of us had only been to Mud Lake once before. This time we explored all of the three loop trails there.

We found all the usual suspects of Rocky Mountain wildflowers, many of which I had already extensively photographed. The ones that excited me the most yesterday were a class of less common flowers that are also beautiful.

These were the fungi. While we don’t usually think of fungus as being beautiful — after all, we enjoy mushrooms for their taste much more than for their looks — many of them are lovely.

A Colorful Mushroom

A Colorful Mushroom

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A Twisted Pair of Pinedrops

A Twisted Pair of Pinedrops

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The flower that excited me the most was a that relies entirely on symbiotic fungi in their coral-shaped roots for their food.

A Coralroot Orchid

A Coralroot Orchid

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But I seem to have worked hardest to capture an image of a succulent.

Yellow Stonecrop

Yellow Stonecrop

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I think these stonecrops were what I was shooting when Sharon took this shot of me.

The Photographer at Work

The Photographer at Work

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Like one of my photography teachers often says, “Don’t be afraid to get down and dirty. That’s what the laundry is for.”

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