Sunday, September 18, 2011

Trinidad State Park, Colorado - Laura Gillis

Just got back from a nice cool week in Colorado -- It was nice to get away from the heat here in Texas and relax a bit.

We went camping at two of our favorite Colorado state parks - Trinidad Lake, near Trinidad, and Mueller, west of Colorado Springs near Divide. We usually take two days to travel to Mueller -- At home our altitude is just under 1,000 ft. and our camp is at 9,600 ft. so it takes us a bit to adjust.

We got to Trinidad early in the day so I had time for some sketches.... first, was the rabbit brush, the park’s plant of the week. We had a pretty little cottontail come visit our camp but ironically, she showed no interest in the rabbit brush.

The park had lots of grama grass (misspelled in the journal - only one m). I thought it was Black Grama but when I looked in my Colorado flora book, they didn’t list Black Grama but they did list Hairy Grama so that is what I am calling it for now. I will have to see if I can find the difference in one of my other grass books. Either way, I do like grasses. I just need to learn more about how to tell them apart!

A Gamble’s Oak was also in our campsite and covered in galls. When I got to looking, there were several different shapes and sizes both on leaves and on the branches of the tree. I saw one wasp that was very attentive to one particular gall but I never saw the wasp chew on or try to pierce the gall in any way. It seemed to be going around the gall in circles and smelling it. I don’t if maybe the wasp was protecting it by leaving some kind of pheromone or maybe it was getting ready to parasitise the gall. (It is nice to be so easily entertained.... ha!)

The day ended with a full moon over Fishers Peak Mesa that was really spectacular.

There are more sketches to come... I thought I would spread them out a little and not overwhelm everyone with one long post!

All sketches, ink & watercolor on handmade hemp paper.


  1. Laura, these are so wonderful. I love Colorado, and you've really reminded me so clearly of some of the things I love...

  2. Great pages, Laura! I so love experiencing other's travels through their sketchbooks.


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