Sunday, December 4, 2011

A desert wildflower hike in Patagonia

We are still traveling around Patagonia and every day has been filled with beauty. These flowers are from a short hike we did  outside the town of El Calafate. The hike isn't in any of the guide books we just decided to make our way out of town and followed the river up to winding canyon. It was just beautiful and we had the entire place to ourselves! The picture above is of the Calafate berry. The locals claim that if you eat the berry you will return to Patagonia.   

Those of you in the Pacific Northwest probably recognize these lovelies, apparently lupine have a very large range.

These look very similar to our own "Spring beauties"

I had seen these diminutive little orchids in the guidebooks but hadn't seen any. My husband decided that he was ready to turn back and head towards town but I wanted to go just a little further up the hill so he waited for me. After only about 100yards or so I came across this meadow filled with literally hundreds of these tiny yellow orchids - AMAZING! They covered the desert floor in swaths of soft yellow. My husband said he suddenly heard me break out into giggles and knew I must have found something beautiful.

These are called dessert alstromeria. The picture on the left is the plant before it blooms - it looks almost like a sea anenome. The soft peach and grey coloring is just gorgeous.

Drifts of these white blooms cover the roadsides.

Goodbye sweet canyon - thank you for a perfect afternoon.

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