Sunday, August 1, 2010

Above the Treeline

Over the last few weeks we ventured to Colorado for vacation where we fly fished and did some white water rafting as well as a lot of hiking. But my favorite times were spent searching for Pikas with my wife Lenore above the treeline on Loveland Pass. My favorite animal to photograph is the Pika. Pikas are easily one of the cutest animal found on the planet. At least Lenore and I think so.

Pikas aren't very big. They are about six to 8 inches long with brown and gray fur and they only weigh about six ounces which isn't a whole lot. They are mostly found above the tree line at 8,00 to 13,500 feet above sea level. Which makes finding them quite a feat if you live close to sea level like we do. We did a lot of huffing and puffing to get up the trail to where the Pikas live in the rocky talus slopes above the pass.

Pikas are amazing in that they don't hibernate. They survive the winter by stocking up on hay in the summer that they make by collecting flowers and plants and drying them in the sun in little hay stacks. They hide the hay in their dens and snack on the hay all winter long. They are fun to watch scurrying about the rocks gathering plants in their mouths and running back to put them into neat piles.

Between the Pikas the views and the wildflowers we had a wondeful time watching and photographing the Pikas.

God's blessings to all,


1 comment:

  1. Really interesting and charming photos. Thanks for sharing them, Chris.