John & Anne Wiley

2011/09/06

High Road to Stanley

I’m looking at the pix from 8/18 and am again flying solo from Smiley to Stanley and back. Here are a few more pix from that day, overflowing with Sawtooth scenes high among the mountains that will return yet again in my dreams tonight. First up, a spike of rock guarding a valley of slumbering little lakes.

3988 Shepherd Spire

3988 Shepherd Spire

Now a baby lake hiding above the dominant one that has attracted a large congregation of trees, and the attention of all the nearby peaks.

4021 Peekaboo Lake

4021 Peekaboo Lake

Variations in color deep in this next one makes it for me a translucent smooth gemstone set among the sharp stones.

4026 Flat Gem

4026 Smooth Gem

I just love how clearly the patch of snow was reflected in the deep blue of a long lake that drains in a long cascade at the right. It’s diminutive companion at the left has such delicate shadings from green to blue.

4037 Peaceful Blue Lake

4037 Peaceful Blue Lake

It takes me back to a meditation I once did on the theme of a peaceful blue lake. The one I imagined was much like this, though in less rugged terrain. After a long and relaxing look at this refreshing sight, I turned toward Stanley which is reputed to be one of the coldest places in the continental U.S. (-57F record according to wiki). I decided to descend in a circle over the airport and check out the wind and the runway (running diagonally up from the bottom-right). I knew there had been recent pavement work at one end, but not whether that portion was yet open, so I decided to make my first landing on gravel.

4057 Stanley, ID

4057 Stanley, ID

Gravel has a lumpy bumpy surface like grass landing strips, without the cushion effect but with plenty of loose rocks to ding our beloved Tripp. Propellers in particular are vulnerable, so I took great care with all the precautions for operating aircraft on gravel and Tripp didn’t get a single nick. I met up with Anne, and we posed for this scenic shot taken by the pilot of another plane. If the jeep hadn’t been parked there, this would be one of my fav pix from the trip and perhaps my fav of Tripp. As it is, my eye invariably goes to the jeep and now I’ve probably ruined it for you too.

4064 Zen Imperfection

4064 Zen Imperfection

As with a Tibetan sand painting, that small flaw amid the grandeur is an important contribution. Shall I meditate on that, or photoshop it out for our holiday greeting card? 🙂

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