Montana Outdoors

June 19, 2009

Bear Grass

Filed under: Flowers, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures, Wildflowers — Tags: , — montucky @ 6:51 pm

Today was a day of rain, light to moderate for the most part, but never ceasing. It seemed a good idea to try a hike to a tall peak not far from my house and perhaps get above the clouds, but that turned out to be somewhat like trying to swim up a waterfall: the rain was very heavy up there, the brush was soaking wet and the clouds were so dense there was limited visibility. However…

As the road to the trail head rose to between 5,000 and 6,000 feet the Bear Grass blooms were just about everywhere. I’ve read that each plant blooms only every 5-10 years and the standard is about 7. That makes sense because the only other time I’ve seen Bear Grass blooms this thick was in 2002. They are large flowers and the stalks on most of these were nearly shoulder height.

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

41 Comments »

  1. Seeing your photos of the beargrass tonight brought a big smile to my face! What a sight to behold! Thanks, Montucky!

    Like

    Comment by Maureen — June 19, 2009 @ 7:48 pm

    • They do create quite a scene, don’t they! It’s just so nice to see them bloom like this. I can remember scenes like this going back into the ’40s.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 19, 2009 @ 9:06 pm

  2. That is a heck of a spectacle and a privileged to be there.

    Like

    Comment by rvewong — June 19, 2009 @ 7:58 pm

  3. in that second photograph they almost look like little aliens. the photos are beautiful. i bet they glow in the moonlight too! i had never seen bear grass… now i have. thanks for sharing!

    Like

    Comment by kcjewel — June 19, 2009 @ 8:22 pm

    • They do seem to glow, Jewel. They are big enough and white enough that they really show up near nightfall. Over the next few days I’ll check a couple other places and see if the bloom is this heavy there too.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 19, 2009 @ 9:12 pm

  4. So fresh!! I can almost breathe in that air!

    Like

    Comment by Stacey — June 19, 2009 @ 8:26 pm

    • The air is usually very clean here, but especially after a good rain, and the plant life is also clean and fresh.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 19, 2009 @ 9:14 pm

  5. It’s is so nice to see someone taking great shots around Plains. As you may remember, I grew up there and I miss it.

    Like

    Comment by Radd — June 19, 2009 @ 8:42 pm

    • I hear that! I spent many hears away from here and missed the country very much all the while. Thanks for dropping by again!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 19, 2009 @ 9:15 pm

  6. Such odd growth. I miss Montana. 😦

    Like

    Comment by iheartfilm — June 19, 2009 @ 9:51 pm

    • I think anyone who has spent any time in Montana would miss it a lot! I spent many hears away from here and missed it all the time I was gone!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 19, 2009 @ 9:56 pm

  7. Great capture of a moment in time of a flower. Gathered together the flowers make such a lovely scene.

    Like

    Comment by Preston Surface — June 20, 2009 @ 4:01 am

    • Unfortunately, the photos show only a tiny bit of the scene which goes on for many miles.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:15 am

  8. wow! amazing shots! love the view and the close up as well!

    Like

    Comment by silken — June 20, 2009 @ 9:46 am

    • I wish you could see the forest now, Silken. I know you would love it!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:11 pm

  9. Had never seen Bear Grass before. thanks for the education. There must be fairies dancing there after dark. So beautiful..

    Like

    Comment by SuzieQ — June 20, 2009 @ 10:12 am

    • I’ve often wished that I had the night vision of the cougar so I could see who frequents those places after dark. I’d like to think there were wild critters out there enjoying themselves among all of the decorations.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:15 pm

  10. Wow, what a spectacular sight! Sort of surreal, very beautiful series.

    Like

    Comment by Candace — June 20, 2009 @ 2:15 pm

    • “Spectacular” is a good word for them, Candace. THose scenes go on for miles.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:22 pm

  11. My wife loves Bear Grass but living in Gallatin County we don’t have the privilege of seeing it. I would appreciate a recommendation for a place to view such a sight.

    Like

    Comment by Tim — June 20, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

    • Tim, these are in the area of Plains in Sanders county and there are several areas near here including the one where the photos were taken that have lots of them in bloom. I don’t know where you might see any closer to your area.

      I know this is some distance from you, but if you are interested I will be happy to give you specific directions to where you can see these.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:34 pm

    • Hello Tim, We just saw some beautiful bear grass by swan lake, all along the road. Born and raised in Hot Springs, I have never noticed this beautiful growth. What a find!

      Like

      Comment by ida — June 29, 2009 @ 10:43 pm

  12. Very strange looking flowers. Almost like some kind of alien mushroom or something from far away. To me anyway, haha.

    Like

    Comment by scienceguy288 — June 20, 2009 @ 4:17 pm

    • They are certainly unusual flowers and the leaves are very distinctive as well.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:35 pm

  13. Gorgeous!

    Like

    Comment by Patia — June 20, 2009 @ 5:21 pm

    • Thanks Patia. These are along the Corona road near Baldy Mountain just outside of Plains.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:37 pm

  14. Truly a spectacular sight to behold! I’m so glad you captured it with your camera and shared it here with the rest of us.

    Like

    Comment by Tabbie — June 20, 2009 @ 9:17 pm

    • I wish you could see these in person, Tabbie. It’s an awesome sight!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 20, 2009 @ 9:38 pm

  15. Hi Terry. I’ve been viewing your website over the past several weeks and your photos of wildflowers and writing are beautiful. What focal length/brand lens are you using? I’m currently traveling in South America and have misplaced your email. Will you resend it to me as I’ve got a couple pics I’d like to share with you. Thanks!

    Cameron Naficy

    Like

    Comment by Cameron — June 21, 2009 @ 2:59 pm

    • Thanks Cameron! I just sent you an email with the lens info. I’d love to see those pics! Hope you’re having a great time on that trip!

      Terry

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 21, 2009 @ 6:19 pm

  16. Beautiful, even a hike in the rain turns up to be beautiful.

    Like

    Comment by Cedar — June 21, 2009 @ 5:05 pm

    • It did. As far as I’m concerned there is no such thing as a bad day in the back country! I love summer rain anyway: the only rain I don’t like is the freezing rain of early winter,

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 21, 2009 @ 6:21 pm

  17. Nice to witness such a rare occurrence!

    Thanks!

    Like

    Comment by Pinhole — June 21, 2009 @ 6:11 pm

    • It is really nice to see! I took my wife for a drive today to see the blooms and she also enjoyed them. They go on for miles.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 21, 2009 @ 6:22 pm

  18. Beautiful images Terry, I love how the Bear Grass contrasts so well with the green foliage.

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful world !!

    Like

    Comment by Bernie Kasper — June 22, 2009 @ 9:04 am

    • The do make a pretty sight. I love it when the blossoms grow right in among the fir needles.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 22, 2009 @ 12:39 pm

  19. How awesome are those flowers! They really stand out. I bet they are breathtaking in a large stand. I’ve never seen anything like it before.

    Like

    Comment by Bo — June 22, 2009 @ 9:34 am

    • As opposed to most wildflowers here, these are huge and it’s is indeed breathtaking to see them bloom as they are this year. They do on as far as you can see into the forest.

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 22, 2009 @ 12:41 pm

  20. Saw a similar site at a lake near Thompson Falls this last week. What a spectacular and rare sight!

    Like

    Comment by Sue — June 28, 2009 @ 10:46 am

    • They are blooming all over this area, Sue. I saw a huge area of them last night at the upper end of Weeksville Creek too.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

      Comment by montucky — June 28, 2009 @ 4:48 pm


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