Thursday, June 14, 2012

Upper South Fork Skokomish

Patches knows....

Google set a 1gm limit on blogger photos but I think I got around that by joining Google plus.

Left the house at about 10 and arrived at the trailhead.  Hiked the trail.  The bridge at the second crossing is still out but a huge old growth tree fell down to the right of the old bridge (heading in) and crossing on it was easy.  I can’t imagine why some folks choose to cross on the pecker pole to the left of the bridge.  There was a huge blow down area before the third bridge.  Many old growth and smaller trees were thrown down in some sort of big disturbance event.  The WTA was at the trail head and getting ready for a 3 day work party to repair this. 

The bridge at the third crossing is broken, rotten and collapsed in the middle.  It was fine for crossing but will probably wash away next winter.  We only made it 3.75 down the trail before we had to turn around due to time constraints.  I had tea and lunch next to the river.  There was a neat rotten log in our lunch spot that had many different types of liverworts growing on it.

 I saw the liverwort Riccardia several times.  After seeing it for the first time on my last hike I now have an eye for it and know where it will be.  It likes to grow on the faces of cut logs that are not too rotten and it grows in a ring around the log at the layer between the bark and the wood.  I also saw Ptilidium californicum  (pacific fuzzwort) again and it was at less than 2,000 feet elevation.  So I think it is not dependent on high elevation here but it is dependent on old growth.  I saw the Cortinarius clandestinus mushrooms in several places.  Trilliums are fully open and just barely starting to fade here.  Even though it is low elevation it seems that this part of the valley is quite cold.  We found snow on the trail at 1,600 feet and Gyromitra esculenta or “snow bank false morel” was growing there.

We also found a black cup fungus and here is a look at its ascospores at 1000 times magnification:
Hooked paraphyses and tip of an ascus with two spores in view perhaps this is  Pseudoplectania vogesiaca

Spores in an ascus

8 ascospores per ascus

Got back home to a disaster.  The little one did not get on her bus.  She played at being sick instead and snuck back in the house.   The house was a mess, my spouse was grumpy.  I have a cold, but I’m glad I managed to get out for a bit.

7.5 miles 600 feet elevation gain
Wild Ginger


Snow bank false morel

Slippery creek crossin

whole tree and part of tree make up for missing bridge

Pilophorus acicularis lichen


Patches loves water

Pacific Fuzzwort

Mystery liverwort

Missing first bridge

Lunch spot

Jessica navigates part of a rather large blowdown

Found on trail

Clandestine Cort

Cache hide 3

Cache 2

Cache hide 1

Broken bridge at third crossing

Amazing lichen and moss coverd rock

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