Another Day, Another Outcrop

It would seem that the human female has not had enough of sun, sand, and scrambling about over rocks looking at planty things.  She and Sigyn got up at the merest whimper of dawn this morning to go to a “field day” in the next county over.  I had heard the Midgardian expression “having a field day” before, but I had never understood the context.  Apparently, it means, “gathering the nature nerds together to tromp all over the countryside, poking at things.” I can think of better ways to spend a day, but someone has to make sure the human female gets Sigyn home safely, so here I am, en route to a place called “Sugarloaf.”  I can’t imagine what sort of place it could be–on Asgard, bread comes in loaves and sugar comes on sticky buns.  Perhaps there will be bakery snacks where we are going?

We have arrived.  It turns out that Sugarloaf is a mountain–or what passes for a mountain in this part of Midgard.  Sugar used to be molded into tall, pointy loaves for shipping, hence the name.  Our path begins at the bridge over the nearby Little River.

bridge

It is a very slow, glassy river. With the drought, it is down by a good number of feet.  The human female suggested I step up on the railing for a better view, but fool me once…

Down near where the cars have been parked and the field trip folks are gathering and gearing up, Sigyn has found some woolly croton.  Sweetie, it’s coolish right now, so I can understand wanting a warm hat, but the afternoon is supposed to be warm, so I don’t think you will want it for long.

croton

You can’t tell from the above photo, but I took the human female’s hand lens our of her little pack before we left home.  She’s going to want that later.

The human female is definitely getting too old for this.  I am listening to her huff and puff, hauling herself up the side of this sandstone monolith, and wondering if she’s going to make it at all, and it’s not that far.  Too many late nights, too many cookies.

We have reached the summit, or what is left of it.  This is one enormous chunk of rock.  Oooo. What’s the green stuff?

lichen

Ah.  A lichen.  Look–there are gray ones, too.  Now the plant nerds on this trip are happy, because green things.  (But technically, lichens aren’t plants.)

A geologist and historian are now lecturing about the geological and historical significance of this site.  I’m am half listening to the rock expert go on about layers and Oligocene marine sediments and ferret oxides (what do weasels have to do with reddish rocks?!)  Mostly I am enjoying the view, which is actually rather nice.

view1

Look–away out there, Sigyn.  You can see the bridge.  Wow.  You don’t realize how FLAT this part of Midgard is until you get up someplace like this and can see there is not. one. single. hill. anywhere within a million kilometers.

view2

Nor any fall color.  Well, all right.  I suppose tan is a color.

Oh, hey–this is getting interesting.  The historian is telling us about Native Americans and Spanish explorers and hidden gold and murders!  Treasure hunters blew the top off this mountain, looking for the gold, but no one ever found it.  That settles it.  At the earliest opportunity, I am coming back.  With my magic, I bet I could find it in no time.  I shall have to study the topographical maps and examine the rocks most thoroughly.

top

Do you see anything sparkly, Sigyn?

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