Sound of Music Hill

Finally - the girls and I visited Sound of Music Hill this morning. It was covered in yellow sunflowers (arrowleaf balsomroot). Gorgeous. Especially with sunshine. It's been cloudy, very windy, sometimes rainy, and cold lately. The cold part we like. But sunshine to highlight the wildflowers is always best.

The lupine are just starting to grow. Last year at this time they were in full bloom here, along with Indian paintbrush and others; the sunflowers were past their prime or gone. It's going to be a very short summer at higher elevations.

After leaving Sound of Music Hill (my own name for it; it's really just one of many such open hillsides within the Payette Forest, all nameless as far as I know) the girls and I ran on old logging roads through the forest, places we haven't visited since the first deep snows hit last autumn. At these elevations - around 5000 feet - the snow is almost completely gone. When the girls find a small patch hiding in a shady spot, they aim for it as if pulled by internal magnets, eating the snow despite all the tree needle debris on its surface.
I venture into the forest to find flowers. Meadow's always on the lookout for bones. She found these vertebrae and carried them quite awhile before finally dropping them. Those first moments, when she picks up a found bone in her mouth and comes running to catch up to me and Maia, showing off her find - total bliss for her. If a dog could giggle out loud, she would.