July 2008: A hike up Cone Peak, near Iron Mountain
Cone Peak The alpine flowers of the Iron Mountain area are well know to many Oregonians. The colorful displays Usually reach their peak of color in July. The small meadows are accessible by a relatively short trail rising about 800ft from the trailhead. Here, Cone Peak rises behind a hiker heading down the trail.
Delight These fragile flowers live brief but glorious lives. The snow melted just a few weeks prior, and will return in a couple months.
False Solomon's Seal This pocket of False Solomon's Seal was growing in a wooded area just beyond the meadows.
Scarlet Gilia This brilliant flower, also known as Skyrocket, likes dry soils like the pumice slopes of Cone Peak.
Stonecrop This plant is related to the cactus. It stores water in its moist flesh, to survive long dry periods.
Another Evening Dusk settles over the meadows on Cone Peak.
Where is it? Iron Mountain is located in the Oregon Cascade Mountains, about 15 miles west of Santiam Pass. It's about a 2.5 hour drive from the Portland metro area.
Before you go... These fields can be loved to death in the peak of the flower season - which is usually July. Please remember that it takes only one footstep on what appears to be bare earth to kill a germinating alpine plant for multiple seasons.
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