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Packer Lake 8 September 2020


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Today is a designated acclimatization day. We both notice that walking uphill is harder here. Our hearts go faster, and we breathe harder. Our bodies are set for Sea Level, and we have dislocated them to more than a mile in the sky. Half our accustomed oxygen is missing. 

The elevation disrupted our sleep last night. Maybe some good bread, and a mid-morning fruit salad will help?

And time.

So today is for taking it really easy. I finished a book, and wish it had gone on longer ...but it's number two in a seven book series, so I'll be okay. Rochelle took a little nap and did some drawing. I made an infographic about the stump outside our cabin, and a good lunch of my own meatballs, my own tomato sauce, and some delicious ravioli from Capelli's. There doesn't seem to be anything wrong with our digestion.


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The smoke has mostly cleared, and there's good blue High Sierra sky above us. We walked awhile, slowly, taking the hills at an easy pace. At the two-thirds point we sat on the dock and watched the bird business on the lake: three regular ducks show us the lake, at least on our side, is shallow; one rugged individual fancy duck sleeps at lake center.

Packer's a moraine lake; one can easily see how the glacier worked its way down the mountain behind, pushing rocks and gravel before it, making a dam that has trapped a lake; the hills around here made dozens of little moraine lakes like Packer. Apparently for the benefit of the Osprey, this lake is stocked with Rainbow Trout.

An Osprey hits the lake, then beats its way airborne, a few strokes, and then gives that funny stutter they do to shake off the water ... a small fish in its talons, it beats away over the trees. A little later, a pair take up positions in the trees, watching. The wind shivers the lake surface, making their work harder.

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<p>Packer Lake looking toward the moraine</p>

Packer Lake looking toward the moraine

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Along with the quiet, there is a sense of ancientness here, and peace. A tree stump beside our stairs had been conducting business for more than two centuries when it, having attained climax, was cut down.

Probably a Ponderosa Pine, the lower thirty feet sliced for plywood, its upper reaches would have been sliced into knotty pine, so it lives on. One can see the wet years (those following 1920) and the dry, and the way its growth slowed at about 185 years: done adding biomass, and ready to recycle. (I added the footprint unintentionally, but it gives a sense of scale: that's the front end of a 12-inch foot.)


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. Looking west from the outlet of Packer Lake.</p>

Good Night, Sun. Looking west from the outlet of Packer Lake.

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