Craig took all of the pictures on our Wednesday drive and hike at Lassen National Park. I asked him to pick his favorite three, and I added three that I liked that also told the "story" of the day. This boulder was huge! It is balanced near the edge of a sheer drop off near the Bumpass Hell trailhead.
Unfortunately we were not able to go on that trail because it was still snowed in.
Instead we drove to the Visitor's Center and watched a half hour film about the park which included footage of Bumpass Hell. It is Lassen's largest hydrothermal area. Oh well, we saw similar volcanic features in New Zealand a few years back. Stinky mud and steam!
From Craig: if anyone's wondering about the name of the area, it seems there was a man in the 19th century whose last name was Bumpass. He was guiding a party through the area, including the editor of a local newspaper, when he fell through a rock crust into a pool of boiling mud. He was never the same, but the newspaper made him a local hero and the area was named for him.
Speaking of snow, this picnic table was still surrounded.
You might think all of this snow made things cold, but it didn't. I'm still wearing a light sweater here, but by the end of the day I had rolled up my long pants to "shorts" length. It was a beautiful day!
Several of the small lakes along the road in the higher part of our drive were still a snow covered combination of water and ice. The light blue was an interesting color.
We did get to hike, and once again the vistas were amazing.
Kings Creek Falls was at the end of a very difficult stretch of rock strewn path. The picture above was in one of the more level and less rocky places.
If you notice the size of the trees in the top left part of the picture, you can imagine how big the falls were. Snow melt doing its thing!
After our hike, Craig's hip was bothering him a little so he asked me to drive the Accent home. As a passenger I often nag HIM about going too fast. We were coming to the last couple of miles of the park when the speed limit changed from 35 to 25.
"Slow down!" he says. I didn't ...
Just as we got to the exit a ranger pulled up behind me and as soon as we were out of the park he turned on his lights and pulled me over.
I've learned from the past that in such a situation is best to never admit your guilt. Be contrite, but never apologetic. Don't argue, answer the questions, but don't cry.
"Do you know why I pulled you over?"
"Umm, because I didn't have my permit hanging from the mirror as instructed? I thought it interfered with my line of sight..." I held up the valid pass.
"Do you know what the speed limit is here?"
"No, 25. Do you know how fast you were going?"
"I've only had the car for a few weeks, and was more concerned with driving safely than looking at the dashboard... "
"Registration and proof of insurance please." He took them off to his vehicle to call it in.
I was sure I was going to get a ticket, which would not be good, because I got one last fall and already used up my traffic school option for the year.
Then the nice ranger came back, handed me my information back, and gave me a warning ticket!
Such a sweet boy.