The Alpine Tundra

For me, the most magical area, in the Rocky Mountains National Park, was the Alpine Tundra.  Although it was a bit of a hike, it was well worth the climb!

Elevation 12,005 feet above sea level

“The alpine tundra is a land of contrast and incredible intensity, where the sky is the size of forever and the flowers the size of a millisecond.” ~Ann Zwinger, Land Above the Trees


The tundra is a very special place.  Strained by bitter winds and cold, only the strong survive.  Even in the summer, the temperatures are very cool.  The trees that border the tundra grow only an inch in diameter every one hundred years.  Here, snow can fall any day of the year, with nighttime temps dipping below freezing.  Unfortunately, with these conditions, the growing season lasts only 6-8 weeks each year.

Alpine Sunflower (Tetraneuris grandiflora)

During the winter, hurricane level winds, over 100 miles an hour move snow across the tundra.  Drifts up to 30 feet high form, providing a protective blanket of snow for plants and animals.  Learning about the winter in the tundra, made me rethink moving to the tundra!


Climbing just a little higher in elevation, we came across an area with mushroom rocks.

DSC_0660 These fabulous rocks were created with a little fire and water.  Originally sand, silt and clay from the bottom of the ocean, these materials were met with hot magma from deep in the earth, thus leaving us with lighter colored granite.  The mushroom shapes were formed when the granite stems eroded more quickly than the caps.


There was nothing more magical than playing above the clouds…


While exploring these rock formations, we discovered this beautiful compass. We felt a bit like treasure hunters!

Trail Ridge Mountain Index: 12,304 Feet Above Sea Level

I could have sat for hours, watching the clouds and the mountains play.  The high elevation forced us to move slowly, which was a beautiful gift.

There was a peacefulness in the tundra unlike any other I have ever experienced when traveling.  I felt connected somehow to this “land above the trees”.  This photo describes my feelings exactly…


Until we meet again…

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…







365 Challenge: Day 346 – Roda

I am back in sunny Michigan this morning, after a wonderful adventure in New York City! Temperatures are going to be in the 50s today! Woo-hoo! Before leaving NY, Jay and I wrote a blog post together, about our weekend. The TRUTH can be found in the italics…

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…


This Is My Truth Now

Roda: who came to NYC to visit me — you can check out her blog profile at GrowingSelf


As many of you figured out from a few posts, Roda from GrowingSelf visited me in NYC this weekend. We’d been having a lovely week of 65 degree weather, a very comfortable temperature filled with sunny days and light breezes. The darkness and the rain descended upon us Friday morning and just finished as Roda left for the airport a few minutes ago. (Correction…this is Roda, by the way, and I am still here.  The rain ended yesterday afternoon.  Jay is sharing his “Untruth” now.) I’m not at all suggesting it’s a coincidence. Just setting the tone… as it’s been quite an interesting (Interesting…let’s consider a new word choice, my author friend!) trip! I’ve learned a few new words, such as woozy. I believe it’s a combination of what

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Self Care

As many of you have figured out by now, I am in New York City, visiting my Little Bro, Jay. I pre-scheduled all of my posts for the weekend and even left the laptop and camera at home!  Leaving the camera home was so difficult for me, but Jay promised that I would not miss out on any amazing critters, in NYC.  No worries…I still have my iphone camera, if needed!

Remember, you have to nourish to flourish!


I can’t wait to share my trip with everyone next week!

Do something for YOU today!

Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…