along the trail

hoover-dam-railroad-trail

I have been going through photos from the first trip this past spring, and happened upon this one, from a lovely afternoon in Boulder City, Nevada. The National Park Service has built a gorgeous hiking trail that follows the railroad line that brought supplies and building materials to the construction site of the Hoover (neé Boulder) Dam back in the late 1920s.  The trail follows Lake Mead and ends up at the dam 3.7 miles later.

We had a great hike[1.Although I couldn’t enter the dam’s damn visitor center because I refused to give up my Leatherman. Really? What am I going to do?], and I got this nice shot  of Susan in one of the huge railroad tunnels along the trail. (Click to see it bigger.)

sunset in the valley (panorama)

sunset in the valley pano

I’m currently camped in Valley of Fire State Park, north of Las Vegas. I’ve been coming here for years, but I have never seen the desert as green as it is right now; this is a banner year for the deserts of southern California and Nevada, and we’ve been lucky to see the blooms (although we wish we had made a detour to Death Valley on our way down).

There are wildflowers everywhere, but what’s really stuck with me is the different shades of green that are everywhere — even up into the mountains. There are shades of green that range from the bright greens you see in a baseball park, to the earthy slate greens of olive branches, to the warm yellowish greens of spring trees in Portland. I’ve been struggling with trying to get that range photographically. Here’s one attempt, from this beautiful valley I’ve been looking at every evening.

Click to see it larger.[1. I know there’s an issue with the top of the image getting cut off when you view it larger; I’m looking into it, but won’t really be able to get it fixed until I’m in a place with better–and more regular–wifi.]