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Tag Archives: tamarack

Alpine (also called subalpine) and western larches are conifer trees that are deciduous. Their needles change color and drop to the group each year. These trees put on magnificent shows of yellow and orange in the Cascades and other mountains. In some regions, they are referred to as tamaracks. Right now, the alpine larches are at the peak of their color and I’d suggest that you head for the high mountains and enjoy them for this brief moment of the year before winter really sets in.

Ken has been wanting to go for a hike for weeks but his schedule has been busy and now with fishing season going again, it’s hard to fit in something we want to do together. Blue Lake was high on his list after I went there recently so off we went for a short day hike.

It really is a beautiful place and now with the larch, also known as tamarack, trees going into their glorious yellow phase, it is a must see place. I know of two kinds of larch trees in our region – the western and the alpine. I’m not sure where the dividing line, elevationally, is for them. There is probably some overlap and we may have seen both around Blue Lake at 6250′. Larches are the only conifer type tree that has needles that turn yellow and fall to the ground each year. Well, it’s the only one I know about.


Ken imagined he could see the glacier coming out of this round valley.



A small shallow pond near Blue Lake



Ice remained on the pond at midday



Just can’t quit photographing these trees.


Ken can’t quit either


Mountains to the north




It’s either the world’s tiniest mountain goat or a feral jack russell terrier


The outlet




Down the trail.


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