Wednesday, January 5, 2011

More Dunes Photos

Here are the rest of the photos from our awesome dune hike the other day. First we bushwhacked across the dunes to the Lake Superior shoreline bluff.

The intense winds lately have made some outstanding patterns in the sand.

We found a gravel bed up on top of the dune. Do you notice the translucency of some of the quartzy specimens that you can see because of the low sun angle?

We noticed that the juniper bushes in the dunes have a different configuration in the winter. Right now the branches are arching upward. This is probably to help protect them from the snow. In the summer the branches spread out.

These ferns also have an interesting adaptation. They stay green under the snow. When the snow melts in the spring, they are ready to photosynthesize to give the fern a head start. Due to the recent thaw, some have been exposed to the sun a bit early.

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