Hiked the Marshall Gulch-Aspen Loop again today. The fire-born aspen saplings are taller than us now, with leaves that rattle in the wind. The wildflowers had mostly died, but bracken were everywhere, dryer than a month ago, but still bright, bright green. Everything was green, and parts of the trail had turned nearly to jungle, with dense ground cover as tall as we were. That thick, thick ground cover seemed more like an eastern oak-and-maple forest than an evergreen pine-and-aspen forest. Without the year-round cover of the scorched pines, along with the early-leafing aspens, the ground cover is free to grow thick and dense. Much of the way we were surrounded by ground cover taller than we were.

The pictures below aren’t terribly accurate–the sun was a bit much for my poor cell-phone camera to take–but picture the greens greener, and the scorched trunks behind them blacker and more stark.

Old growth and new 1 Old growth and new 2

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