Got up around sunrise, snagged a few quick pictures and then, since I failed to bring the 500 mm lens with me, I more or less ran back down the mountain to get it. I booked it cause I did 4+ miles in about 70 minutes, 2 of them straight down and 2 straight up. Also, I had excessive amounts of energy.
(above: the light while I was hiking down to get my 500 lens was ideal, check this picture out also. The view below is more or less from the tent)
I needed the 500, of course, for the PIKAS! Those fantastically cute buggers are crazy hyper (I can relate) but I managed to get a couple sharp full frames of 'em. Man are they cute. I saw 9 total and heard probably more than that. They had a perfect Pikaland and seemed to be thriving on the edge of the lake. Saw a few of their food caches, new and old. I'll put more pictures of them up eventually, since they're so adorable.
Wanted to keep going up the trail to some more lakes but it looked like more storms were rolling in so we decided to head back down. Probably a good idea because pretty much the second I got back to the car, it started raining and thundering.
(not sure what the above flower is, but it definitely wanted it's picture taken)
Re-packed Vladimir back up and started driving north towards the Sawtooth Mountains in Idaho. Insane storm clouds the entire drive and tons of Nighthawks also. Saw this Common Nighthawk somewhere in the middle of nowhere. I had stopped somewhere (in this awesome open expanse surrounding by mountains, with nothing around...pretty much where I want to live) to call Zac. While on the phone, I saw some crazy looking bird...turns out it was a White-tailed Ptarmigan! A new bird for me, and a pretty cool one. There were also some absurd storm fronts all over the place, great clouds. Kinda threatening looking.
Eventually got to the Sawtooths around 10pm but not before we had to drive through Twin Falls, ID. Ew. There was a fire nearby and that plus the agricultural fields and cattle farms...kinda looked an awfully lot like the end of the world. Creepy. Glad to get out of there! Blue Monday
(this golden-mantled ground squirrel looks like a grampa, aw!)