Montana Outdoors

July 28, 2009

White campion

White campion

White campion

White campion,
Bladder campion,
Silene latifolia

Found along USFS trail 368 to Big Hole Lookout in western Montana’s Cabinet Mountains. The white-on-white blossoms are interesting.


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July 27, 2009

An unusual visitor

Filed under: Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures — Tags: , — montucky @ 10:05 pm

This fellow was hanging around the yard for a few days before I caught up to him (sort of). A new one for me!

Common whitetail

Common whitetail

With an accuracy probably bordering on miniscule, I would call this a male
Common Whitetail,
Libellula lydia.

July 26, 2009

Probably not everyone will agree…

Filed under: Animals, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures — Tags: , — montucky @ 10:09 pm

but this is one drop-dead gorgeous Prairie Rattlesnake! Certainly the prettiest I’ve ever seen.

Western Rattlesnake

Prairie Rattlesnake
Crotalus viridis

For perspective, this photo was taken at a distance of about 20 inches with a 60mm (macro) lens and cropped only slightly to center it. It is a large snake (40+inches) and very thick. Very well behaved and easily persuaded to pose for a few photos; alert but not aggressive.

**Correction** I originally thought this was a Western Rattlesnake but in a comment on my Flickr site, a gentleman (Correcamino) corrected me. Upon visiting his Flickr site and reading his profile it was clear that he knows what he’s talking about and I appreciate the correction.

(While I’m editing and correcting anyway, I thought I’d add another photo to show a close-up of the intense look on its face.)

Prairie Rattlesnake

July 25, 2009

Great northern aster

Great Northern Aster

Giant mountain aster,
Few flowered aster,
Great northern aster,
Canadanthus modestus

July 23, 2009

It’s that time of year again.

Filed under: Montana, Outdoors, Rural fire department, Wildland fires — montucky @ 10:52 pm
From the National Weather Service website: “A RED FLAG WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 AM MDT FRIDAY.
THE ATMOSPHERE HAS BECOME UNSTABLE TODAY WITH THUNDERSTORMS DEVELOPING NEAR THE IDAHO AND CANADIAN BORDERS. ADDITIONAL THUNDERSTORMS WILL DEVELOP AND MOVE EAST ACROSS NORTHWEST MONTANA OVERNIGHT. THESE THUNDERSTORMS ARE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF LIGHTNING…RESULTING IN NEW LIGHTNING STARTS ACROSS PORTIONS OF NORTHWEST MONTANA. IN ADDITION…THESE STORMS DO NOT HAVE MUCH IN THE WAY OF RAINFALL ASSOCIATED WITH THEM DUE TO THE DRY LOWER ATMOSPHERE. DRIER CONDITIONS NEAR THE SURFACE IS ALSO CONDUCIVE TO GUSTY ERRATIC WINDS THAT CAN BE PRODUCED BY THESE THUNDERSTORMS.
PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…
A RED FLAG WARNING IS INTENDED TO ALERT LAND MANAGERS TO EXPECT WEATHER CONDITIONS ALONG WITH SUFFICIENTLY DRY FUELS THAT WILL SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASE FIRE DANGER.”

As I recall, the last time we had a red flag warning was in July of 2007 and about two weeks later the Chippy Creek Fire started. It burned 150 square miles.

In addition, the forecast is for dry thunderstorms through Sunday. It may be a long weekend!

Wildland fire gear

July 22, 2009

They’re very common… and yet…

Filed under: Flowers, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures, Wildflowers — Tags: , — montucky @ 6:57 pm

This is one of the most common of all plants in ranching country, but how often do we take the time to look at it this way…

Alfalfa

Harebells, Bluebells of Scotland; the blue bells seem to be everywhere around here this time of year, but a few, just a very few, are not blue.

Harebells

Harebells

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