Sunrise light on a grove of tufa towers emerging from the water of Mono Lake with soft green and dusty-red wild grasses in the foreground, Canada geese in the shallow water with reflections of the rocky towers, and desert hills in the distance.

Tracks in the snow

Deer tracks on the Lee Vining Creek trail. Photo by Rose Wilson
Deer tracks on the Lee Vining Creek trail. Photo by Rose Wilson.

This post was written by Rosanne Catron, 2010 Project Specialist.

Over the last few days the Mono Basin has really shown us a full range of weather and light—deep poconip, light dustings of snow, and brilliant sunshine glinting off the lake. Each morning I wake to a new story told in the windblown snow, the story of the little, quiet animals that creep about the basin at night while most of us are sleeping. There are the rabbit tracks in the alley, scooting from their cozy snow caves in search of food. Outside my door a pair of raccoons wanders almost nightly, leaving teeny, human-like prints in the snow. Best are the bird tracks, big and small, marking where they sheltered from the wind or alighted before heading for the trees. I never see these creatures—by the time I creak open the door they are long gone, scurrying at the sound of my footsteps. But I love knowing they were there before me—the footprints of deer on the Lee Vining Creek trail or the minuscule trace of mice feet and a dragging tail on the fresh snow behind the visitor center. One thing I’ll really miss come spring is the story these wandering footprints tell.

One comment

  1. thanks for that nice little essay Rose. it makes one feel more connected with the creatures of the night.