Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Rainbow Fire

(N37 36.405 W119 04.745)

GPS coords are just approximate according to Google Earth since I did not take any readings there on my own.

From Devils Postpile to Rainbow Falls the hike is just a few miles. A few miles can be a lot of work in the Sierra depending on what you have to hike up or through, but going south from Devils Postpile is rather simple. It is mostly flat, and if there are any elevation changes, then you are really just going downhill. So, we were just flying down the trail as quick as we could go. We ended up passing a lot of groups of people (ex. Boy Scout troops, middle aged to elderly on their backpacking vacations, etc.). Since this is a tourist hike we encountered a lot of people that one could tell do not get out very much. In any case, we eventually passed those people and the area opened up a bit.

For a lot of the hike we were just traveling through a forest area with trees on our sides. It did open up a bit. I knew we were heading into Ansel Adams Wilderness. When you think of Ansel Adams you think of beautiful b/w scenic pictures. So, here are we are:
Ugh, oh! Not good. My memory is a bit hazy, but I seem to remember the fire in August, 1992. A lightning strike three miles south caused a fire that did not seem like it would do the damage that it caused. However, the wind picked up a few days later and spread to this area.

At first I did not care for it, but after looking at it for a bit my opinion changed. It does remind me of what could be a possible fantasy movie type of location. While something like this may seem bad at the moment all it takes is time for nature to bring all the trees back. What has happened in the past 18 years is the new habitat has brought forth new types of plants and animals there were not here before. So, the dead wood is being used in someway.

At the end of my last video on Devils Postpile I showed a little of this area. In the video that comes after the next one I added some alternative footage of this area. So, wait for the next blog or two for that one.

We were only about 1/2 mile until Rainbow Falls. The waterfall ended up being the highlight of the day for me. I think you will really like the next two or three blog entries. It is the stuff I really wanted to get to on this day we did in Mammoth.