in: 2012 Laramie Daze;
For quite a while I've wanted to take a picture of Pretty Cool Boulder (PCB), and now I have. Pretty Cool Boulder appears on the new, expanded version of the Diamond Bay map that will be used for this year's Rocky Mountain Goat. And, yes, it is pretty cool.
Here is what it looks like:
You might wonder how it remains in that impossibly precarious perch. I wondered that, too, and I have an engineering background.
When I scrambled up to take a look what I found was the *only* things holding it in place were some strategically arranged spider threads and tiny amounts of swallow spit (swallow = the bird.) It's quite amazing to witness the spiders and swallows of the Laramie Range working together in such a fine spirit of cooperation. They are a model the antagonistic parties in Congress could study and learn from.
And if you don't believe me, you can visit Pretty Cool Boulder and see for yourself.
I have heard that spider silk is stronger than steel
I never truly appreciated the threat of PCB's until I saw this photograph.
It's impressive that the spiders and swallows cooperated to keep the boulder in place, but the real question is what other creatures worked to get it jacked up like that so that the S & S could work their magic.
It looks like an artificial rock
(maybe a hide-a-key) to me, possibly photoshop'd by someone with a (dubious) engineering background - perhaps financial engineering?
One of our long time club members owns a mock rock. When in need of a control feature he hauls it from his garden and into the woods. The debate is always whether it should be mapped as a boulder or a man-made object.
The cloudy skies in my earlier photo did some amount of disservice to Pretty Cool Boulder, especially in terms of making it clear how much air was under the right edge of the boulder. Since I was going by the boulder again today, I gave it another attempt, and this one turned out better:
I love the way Pretty Cool Boulder is balanced on a downward sloping rock face, with 2 small points of contact!
However, this picture does not tell the story (of the day). For that, a wider view is needed:
Those aren't clouds above the trees on the left side of the photo. That is a small part of the smoke plume from the massive High Park Fire going on down in northern Colorado.
I hadn't realized that there was space under the right side of the PCB until just now, thanks for the update photo, that makes it even cooler. Any chance of a view from a different angle, say, looking straight down on it?
Clue description: "between two boulders" takes on a new meaning.
"Between boulder and bare rock".
Not sure I would be comfortable punching that one........
That cliff is passable? ;)
That cliff is unmistakably not passable. Thought about some tags, but I like the clean look here. There's absolutely no chance of any runner accidentally wandering up or down that cliff.
I did a little poking around, but the Google Maps photos aren't quite sharp enough for me to make a guess.
Try Bing. The coverage is much sharper in this vicinity. I was really pleased to notice the significant difference in resolution this past winter. The Bing stuff is more recent too, from late last summer or thereabouts. It's good enough to be quite useful for mapping.
I get scared just looking at photos of the balanced rock in Norway!
Bing is better in central Washington, too, where there's awesome terrain just waiting to be mapped....
Speaking of... here's a side-by-side comparison of what Google and Bing have of the Moses Lake Sand Dunes map. Google is on the left, taken in August 2011 and Bing on the right, probably taken in late May or early June (the water can't get any higher than that, and it peaks around June 1st).
What was really handy for the US Champs there in 2010, was that the water levels shown on Google at the time were taken on June 25, 2009, 366 days ahead of race day.
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