Sunday, November 17, 2013

Update from the Lake and AK, and a Tribute

When I arrived at the lake late last month, the aspen tree towering over our house was glowing brightly with intense yellow and gold to orange colors, brighter than any I remember seeing before. I'm sad to say I didn't take any photos of this phenomenon, satisfying myself with a couple nice views of the tree, and busying myself around the place with various projects.
Sometime during the morning or afternoon of October 28th, all the leaves from our aspens fell almost all at once, when the wind picked up in front of an incoming Pacific front. Later that evening, I learned that sometime LFD commenter, Alaska Al, had died.
Alaska Al has, between the years of 2008 and 2010, commented on 12 posts and has been mentioned in 6 (the latter somewhat overlapping with the former). More importantly to me, he was one of my major sources of early inspiration, inspiration that led me eventually to become a geologist. His inspiration was mentioned in a few posts, especially these two: Accretionary Wedge #18: How did I Become a Geologist and Where it All Began. Besides being an inspiration for my love of rocks, minerals, and all things geological, he was most likely the source of my seemingly built-in North Arrow (see the second linked post).

Alaska Al, besides these things, has had some photos published in this blog, and has been the source for other photos of mine, particularly photos of certain rocks and minerals. His hand lens is shown here; his field Brunton here.
Mt. Foraker (right) and Denali (left) seen from the hills above Anchorage in early November. Alaska Al had much better photos of Denali than these! The Mountain (as it's called up there) will always remind me of him.
The almost record late first snow fell a few days after I took the photo of Denali.
Thanks to all who have already voiced and sent their condolences via various media.