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Buttercups on the way to Pachnes  - 26th April 2010

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Buttercups on the way to Pachnes - click on the image to enlarge

 

Buttercups on the way to Pachnes
 

I went for a walk to Pachnes, see what the conditions were like for the time of the year. The shepherds road from Anopolis is already open all the way to its end near Roussies. It is the first time ever (in the 12 years or so that I have been coming here) that I see it almost entirely free of snow in April (or even May for that matter). But the road is not in a very good condition so if you want to go there now you will need a 4x4 to negotiate some deep ruts. At the very end it gets worse and not only do you need a 4x4 but you also need to know how to use it. Alternatively, stop about one km from the end of the road and walk.

Considering that there is almost no snow lower down I found quite a lot of snow above 2200m on the northern slopes. Early morning on a cloudy day the snow was hard and a litle slippery in part and I was glad that I had bothered taking an ice axe with me. These slopes go down for a long way and the prospect of going into a slide on one of those is not attractive.
There were already quite a lot of flowers out. Here in the photo Ranuculus brevifolius. I just find it amazing that flowers can grow in such a harsh environment.

The image looks a little washed out...not my fault! It was very hazy / cloudy and the light was really quite "grey".

You can click on the picture to enlarge.

 

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