Hope Valley

Fall in Hope Valley

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First fall hike of the year. Went to Hope Valley to look for fall colors but we were stopped by the water flowing in the river. That’s Pickett Peak in the background.


Hope Valley Turning

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012-2Here’s a shot of Hope Valley turning colors. The runs of golden yellow are the aspens interspersed among the evergreens.


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011Got near the top of the hillside and looked back at the view. Whoa! Amazing view of Hope Valley below!

Conglomerate Erractic

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005Found this cool erratic on top on this hillside.

High Clouds over Junipers

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001Went looking for quartz last weekend. Didn’t find any good ones at this location. But scrambling along the hillside was fun with the high clouds above and these gnarly junipers.

Granite Pegmatites

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058Walked across this ridge and it was loaded with quartz crystals. You can see the faint veins of white running through the granite. When I got back, I searched the web for “red granite with crystals” and this is what I learned.

What is Pegmatite?

Pegmatites are extreme igneous rocks that form during the final stage of a magma’s crystallization. They are extreme because they contain exceptionally large crystals and they sometimes contain minerals that are rarely found in other types of rocks.

To be called a “pegmatite,” a rock should be composed almost entirely of crystals that are at least one centimeter in diameter. The name “pegmatite” has nothing to do with the mineral composition of the rock.

Most pegmatites have a composition that is similar to granite with abundant quartz, feldspar and mica. These are sometimes called “granite pegmatites” to indicate their mineralogical composition.

Colors and Textures

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032Some people might find this photo of a rock, a tree and a mountain. What I see is the rusty hues in the boulder, hard and mottled with lichen. A tree with textured bark that reaches down into the roots. A peak in the distance with lofty white clouds of various shapes and size set in a blue sky. To me, lots of cool colors and textures.