In the Sierra Nevada backyard (again)

We drove through Yosemite and over Tioga Pass (where I used to do field work) to Mono Lake Nevada today and passed from sun to rain clouds and back to sun again.  The granite never fails to make me yearn to live here.

Even in a dry year, the scenery is dramatic, and more so with sun streaming through rain clouds at the end of the day.  These meadows with meandering streams, lined with willows and pines, running through them are favorite breeding sites for all kinds of songbirds.

Two islands in Mono Lake, Nevada.  The dark island is of volcanic origin, the light one is formed from lake sediments thrust up by volcanic domes below.  In addition to the off shore islands, tufa deposits have formed along the shoreline by precipitation of carbonate minerals from the hypersaline water.

Mono Lake is a vital stopping point for migratory waterbirds who come here to feast on brine shrimp and alkali flies who, in turn, thrive on the algae that form a thick green mat across the lake in the spring.  Nearly 2 million birds, including over 30 species of shorebirds, pass through the Mono Lake ecosystem each year.

4 thoughts on “In the Sierra Nevada backyard (again)

    • Some are HDR, others not. The Mono Lake and the Tuolumne Meadows photos are HDR; the rest are what I saw, with a minor amount of tweaking.

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