Monday, August 11, 2014

Orchid Hunting in Eastern Washington (Part 1)

The end of May and beginning of June we went on a two-day orchid hunting trip in eastern Washington with a couple other members of the Washington Native Orchid Society.  We were traveling to Spokane and made this our first stop on the way there.

After traveling across the mountains, we began our search in Blewett Pass,
south of Leavenworth, Washington, and on the east side of the Cascades.

As can be seen from some of the landscape pictures, the wildflowers were at their peak.

Harsh Paintbrush

Tall Silvercrown

Shrubby Penstemon

Scarlet Gilia

 Showy Phlox

 Arrowleaf Balsamroot

We were looking for and found the Mountain Lady's Slipper at several locations.

After Blewett Pass we visited a number of other locations.

We found a few Fairy Slippers still hanging on;

more Mountain Lady's Slippers;

Clustered Lady's Slippers, though these were near the end of their season;

some Phantom Orchids not yet in bloom;

and a lot of Western Spotted Coralroots,
especially the brown and red-stemmed forms.

 There were more wildflowers as well.

Blue Mustard
a non-native

Prairie Smoke

Common Camas
(nearly finished)

Lyall's Mariposa Lily

We also found some seed pods that we were not able to identify.

Finished for the day, we parted ways for the evening to our different accommodations,
ours the back of our van.

The next day we met up near the Washington town of Cashmere for another hike
and more orchid hunting.

Once again there were plenty of wildflowers:

Scarlet Gilia,

Broad-leaved Penstemon,

and Showy Phlox.

The orchids we found were more Mountain Lady's Slippers,

some very unusual color forms of the Western Spotted Coralroot,

and a few Clustered Lady's Slippers that were nearly finished.

On the hike out my wife photographed a Western Gopher Snake, but I missed it.

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