Aliens in the Apple

Roadtrip: Mono Lake

Franci 30 Jul 2013 Nature The Roadtrip

I’m determined to finish the posts of our roadtrip, despite it now being almost exactly a year since we’ve been back in New Zealand.

After our stop in Lone Pine, we drove north to Yosemite National Park. Just near the entrance to the park is Mono Lake, where we stopped for a couple of hours before going on to Yosemite.

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Mono Lake is a very saline lake with no outlet to the ocean, making it more than two times saltier than the sea.

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On the edge of the water there’s a strip of about half a meter that’s black and buzzing. Alkali flies!

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I thought the little flies were a bit gross buzzing around your feet, but the birds liked them, and apparently the early Native Americans in the area ate the fly larvae. Bleh.

All those little black dots in the photo below are the little flies. If I recall correctly they’re only about half a centimeter long.

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An interesting feature of Mono Lake is its Tufa formations. They’re made of limestone, and they’re fun to photograph.

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Ben and Marica had a swim. Ben said it almost felt difficult to swim because he felt like he was bobbing on the water!

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My very own James Bond. Only better, and without the freaky blue speedo. :-)

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Afterwards when they had air-dried, the two of them were left with salt streaks on their legs. I think Marica licked it and confirmed that it was indeed salty!

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The lake is too salty for fish, but is famous for the Mono Lake brine shrimp, only found in Mono Lake. The kids had fun catching them with little pitchers provided by the park rangers.

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Next time, Yosemite!

Comments (4)

Laurel 30 Jul 2013 at 6:35am

The limestone formations remind me a bit of Bryce Canyon’s hoodoos, though a different colour - beautiful!

And thanks for continuing those posts - you’re like me in wanting to finish a job you start. :-)

evaholder 30 Jul 2013 at 1:40pm

I thought the limestone formations looked a like petrified sand castles/sculptures! Thanks for continuing to post!

evaholder 30 Jul 2013 at 1:41pm

That was from Hannah…we’re sharing a computer at the moment (in Provence, France).

Lois Hoyt 4 Aug 2013 at 6:51am

I’m glad to read the recent posts - I’m glad that you are up to posting and that you are determined to finish what you started. As for the Laurelin posts, of course both the details and the photos were a review, but it was good to see them again. (I think the photos are ones Bruce showed me from Facebook.)