Montana Outdoors

June 14, 2010

Queen’s Cup

It was a pleasant surprise this evening to see Queen’s Cup (or Bride’s Bonnet) blooming, for although I have been looking for it, this is the first I’ve seen this year. The quarter-sized flowers always look so nice against the green grasses and low shrubs of the forest.

Queen's CupQueen’s Cup, Clintonia uniflora, Lili family

Queen's Cup

These were growing along the trail at the bottom end of TeePee Creek and another pleasant surprise was to see the creek still running this late in the year. By this time it often is underground at the lower end although still flowing higher up.

TeePee CreekTeePee Creek

Despite the fact that the Forest Service abandoned the TeePee Creek trail and obliterated the road that led to the trail head, the trail itself, although no longer maintained, is still accessible for those who want to work a bit for it. It’s in good bear country.

June 8, 2009

Queen’s cup

Several years ago the local Ranger District, in their infinite wisdom, decided to abandon the trail that followed TeePee Creek below Big Hole Peak near the southeast end of the Cabinet Mountains and at the same time demolished the short road leading to the trail head.

I sometimes go there anyway and last night while hiking through the mess that used to be the access road I stumbled upon this flower that I had never seen before. It seems to like the dense forest shade just above the creek bottom on the north-facing slope. With its golden stamens forming a crown over the pure white cup-shaped blossom, this flower seems to be well named.

Queen's cup

Queen's cup

Queen's cup

AKA Bride’s Bonnet,
Clintonia uniflora
Lily family

Found only in AK, CA, ID, MT, OR, WA, AB, BC

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