Thursday, April 1, 2010

Sutter Buttes in a Pink Sky

Here is my SkyWatch shot. In the evening sky looking to the west is Sutter Buttes, the worlds smallest mountain range, rising from the alluvial plain of the Sacramento Valley.
This is the view from my patio on a clear evening. The buttes intrigue me, beckon me. They are private land, forbidden.

Except, the Middle MountainFoundation has permission to lead hikes on four parcels here and last Sunday I joined them on a wildflower hike.

If you have time, you can join us.
We start our hike crossing this little stream. When summer comes this land will be dry but now it is green with flowing streams.
We see signs that native Americans once used this land.
We see a well dug by the pioneers. I hope they didn't encounter that poison oak, now draped over the edge, when they were drawing out water!
Wild clematis drapes over trees and shrubs.
We walk through stands of Redbud.

There are flowers I don't recall seeing in the past. Did you notice the blue pollen on the Birdseye Gilia?
The Sutter Buttes are the remnants of an ancient volcano. Here we can see the andecite spires from that volcano.
Elsewhere we see the terraces of an ancient lake bed, raised up when the volcano erupted under it.
We end with another sky shot. A view from the buttes over towards the Snow Mountain Wilderness in the Mendocino National Forest.

More skies can be found at Skywatch Friday, hosted for us by Klaus, Sandy, Wren, Fishing Guy and Sylvia.

34 comments:

maryt/theteach said...

Hi, Martha, a little early with Skywatch today. I'll have "Looking at the Sky on Friday" post up later on today. Your photos on that hike are lovely. :)

Carolyn Ford said...

How beautiful! It's funny how we don't think of the "world's smallest," just the world's largest or longest or highest! How interesting to see such history packed into this little space. I saw so much Redbud on the 140 from Merced into the west gate of Yosemite. It is absolutely stunning along the Merced River. What an incredible hike...I would love to do just that, today even!

Gaelyn said...

I'm glad you got to hike in the "forbidden little mountains" and feel like I went along. Very interesting topography. Could you gather a little blue pollen to save for memories?
You have a beautiful view, love the sunset.

Linda Reeder said...

I guess remnants of previous use are intact because the area is private, so that's a good thing. I love the little flowers, and the red buds, wow.

Diane AZ said...

Beautiful sunset view from your patio. I enjoyed the wildflower hike too and I love the blue pollen on the Birdseye Gilia! :)

Sylvia K said...

What a terrific post, Martha! What a wonderful hike and what an interesting place! I would be fascinated by it as well! Love the sunset from your patio! The flowers are beautiful, such lovely colors! Hope you have a great weekend! And thanks for sharing the beauty!

Sylvia

Noelle said...

How interesting...the smallest mountain range. I am from California and I never knew that. What a great experience to be able to explore those mountains that you can view from your home. It is a very beautiful place.

Susan said...

This is a nice walk on the wild side ...thank you! I love the shot of what looks to me like an ancient rock used as a mortar and a pestle.

ewok1993 said...

That's a nice place to explore. And it's the season for walking too.

EG Wow said...

What a fantastic view of the buttes. I would have LOVED to have been on the wildflower hike with you. I was on a walk in the forest today and nothing was blooming so far. I'm envious of the beauty you found. :)

Kcalpesh said...

Absolutely beautiful place! Lovely flowers and amazing Skywatch Photo! :-)

Pixellicious Photos

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Martha -- what a wonderful post. (I've never read an un-interesting one on your blog, but this one's just exceptional.) I loved hearing how you felt about the inaccessible peaks -- and learning that this is the world's smallest mountain range --. And then to find out that you got to hike up one of the peaks. How wonderful. And, every one of your pictures is wonderful. Thanks for sharing the hike and your knowledge with us.

Tammie Lee said...

thank you for sharing the beauty of you time in this sacred land! I loved seeing each and every photo. How lovely that you got to be in an area that calls to you.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

What a treat to go where few can. Great pictures. I really love redbud trees. I'm not sure that I've ever been in a stand of them.

Carver said...

What a great hike to take us on through your photographs. I liked all the shots. Such of variety of wildflowers and other interesting things to see. I love the sky shot you began with.

Debra said...

What a beautiful view of the buttes you have! Thanks for taking us through your hike, these are great pictures. My favorite is that lovely sky in the first one....so pretty! Happy Easter! ~ Debra

Dario Ferrari Photos said...

My favourits are the first one and the flowers..!!!

really great photos!!

Bye
Dario

whatandysees said...

I envy you, your patio view!.. thanks for sharing though!.... :-)

Paulie said...

What a neat journey to the smallest mountain in your backyard! Beautiful and interesting scenery. No wonder they only have guided tours.

Pagan Sphinx said...

What an amazing hike. I love the shots of the tiny wildflowers. Thanks for taking the time to label them.

Barb said...

Oh, Martha, I enjoyed your hike so much. Can't believe all those trees and wildflowers are blooming! So colorful - your photos made my (cloudy) day!

eden said...

What a beautiful place to go for a hike. I love all your beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing

Samson said...

Beautiful set of photo's Martha, Have a great weekend

My Entry - Good Friday

caughtbymycamera said...

Great post and wonderful pictures.

SandyCarlson said...

All that history and wonder and all those beautiful wild flowers. So very beautiful and inviting.

Laura Hegfield said...

All of your photos are lovely, but that first one is quite a stunner...beautiful!

Lindy MacDuff said...

What a gorgeous hike that was and such a beautiful view from your patio! =) I'm sure you see many vibrant sunsets from that spot.

Owlfarmer said...

I'm so glad you could get into the area and take the hike. Maybe a little of the mystery is gone, but what a rich and diverse habitat to enjoy! The view from your patio is almost other-worldly.

Johnny Nutcase said...

Wow! Beautiful place! Glad you got to go on a hike there, looks like lots of fun. The pictures are great, love the wildflowers and the scenery, awesome spot!

EcoRover said...

Nice hike! Generally I'm all for public use of land, but places can be plundered & damaged by the unwashed masses.

ρομπερτ said...

It must indeed be a great place, a great country where you are living.

Please have you all a nice weekend and a wonderful Easter celebration.

Spiderdama said...

This is so wonderful nature. I can almost feel the beauty. Your shots are great:-)
Happy Easter!

Karen said...

Beautiful skies and photos. I really like the colours in that first one ..what a gorgeous view from your patio !!

http://kiwibyrds.blogspot.com/2010/04/sunsets.html

JunieRose2005 said...

WOW! What a beautiful world! I enjoyed the walk!


Junie