Monday, June 30, 2008

'elfin creek'

Viburnum edule. High Bush Cranberry bushes.

What is this new plant I keep running into? Is it American Milk Vetch? I mentioned it before, finding it close to 'moose skull lake'. It is another Astragulus. Astragulus americanus, or is it a white flowered Hedysarum? It is not flowering yet, I look so much forward to that. It looks surprisingly out of place here, it looks coastal, lush, robust. Today I did find it in abundance in a place that looked very coastal, as in the rain forest in Haines Alaska.

I set out to find, where the creek that flows out of 'moose skull lake', goes underground. I started on the power line where it is underground. It's a gully in which the High Bush Cranberry grows, this is a berry bush that grows abundantly on the coast of Alaska here (Haines and Skagway).
I didn't bring a compass. And before I set out into the thick forest. I check exactly where the sun is. I have gotten lost here picking berries. I think the creek meanders more then I realize. Close to the centre of the gully the undergrowth is very thick. I first walk along it in the more open forest. By the time I cut towards it. I find the creek! I decide to back track. Indeed I find the place where it just disappears. All I can say it is a wild place; wet and green, high undergrowth and lots of logs, dead fall. I do like it. I cut back to what I think is east, planning to come out on the little road, behind my place. Ah! the sun is totally obscured by clouds. You guessed it! lost. I end up by the creek again, not knowing I am lost. Delighted; "oh, it has two channels here". I follow it for a while, till I realize it flows in the wrong direction. There are pyrolas and twinflowers blooming. And it is right around here I find the American Milk Vetch. But how do I get out of here? Either way I will find my way home. But once I've done a total 180, without realizing it. It is very hard for me to wrap my mind around which way is which. Walking in what seems to be the opposite direction, I do come out by the little road. Thank you elves!

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