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2nd Place (tie) in the Mary Austin Prize for Writing contest
Lyndsey Rowan
Bishop High School

More often than not, people have to travel great distances to be one with nature. However, sometimes a community is blessed with nature being right out their front door. Bishop is one of those communities. Around this time of year, the weather gets nippy, the days get shorter, the trees change color. Fall is a special time, especially here in the Eastern Sierras. My family and I decided to go on a short hike to Grass Lake, so we could admire the fall colors.
I could tell it would be an amazing hike before we even got out of the truck. The parking lot is about a 25 minute drive from our house; I enjoyed every second of it. As we went up, the sagebrush transitioned into evergreens, which then included aspen trees. Aspen trees are a very special kind of tree. What appears to be an entire forest of aspens could just be a few dozen individual trees. The vast majority of the forest would be made up of each individual’s clones. The more we progressed up the hill, the more yellow, red, and orange we began to see.

Immediately after we stepped out of our truck, we were almost blown over. Jackets were put on and hoods went up. However, the scenery definitely made up for the wind. All around us were valleys of yellow trees and cliffs of gray and red rock. Thin, wispy clouds drifted over us in a bright blue sky. Once we finished admiring the beauty of our surroundings, we made a new friend. Right outside of the parking lot was a marmot, making his way down a heap of reddish-white rocks. He paused towards the bottom, on a flat rock. He stared at us, not showing the slightest hint of fear. Then, he turned to his left, just a little bit, moving into the perfect position for a picture. Mom said he was showing us his good side. The notion of the marmot doing that was pretty funny.

We walked about half of a mile on a dusty dirt road before we even stepped onto the trailhead. Upon entering the trail, I instantaneously felt a sense of wonder. There was a blanket of yellow leaves on the trail, guiding the way. Aspen trees gently encompassed our path, and the faint sound of a trickling stream was audible. In a single file line, we started our trek to the lake.

As I made my way up, I was in awe. I had never been anywhere so serene. I had this thought that was consistent throughout the hike “If fairies are real, they would probably live here.” Aspen trees weaved in and out of one another, making nooks and crannies that small creatures could live in. Small brooks and streams flowed from a larger creek into some of these crannies, providing water to drink from. The golden leaves fluttering across the trail could be made into fairy clothes. It was a lovely idea. Slowly, dry pine needles began to integrate themselves into the leaves on the ground as we progressed. The switchbacks began and continued on, leaving me short of breath on some occasions.

Finally, after climbing for a mile or so, we reached Grass Lake. It was accurately named, for it was surrounded by grass, whispering in the wind. Directly across the lake from us was a patch of trees that stood out to me. The very top of each tree was red, then as you went down the leaves turned orange, then yellow. The wind was still cold, but it was gusty, and in between the gusts you could feel the sweet warmth of the sun on your back. We stayed there, watching waves in the water and eating our snacks for about an hour. Then we headed back, happy with our experience.

(Lyndsey Rowan is a freshman at Bishop Union High School. She moved to Bishop with her mom, dad and younger brother a little over four years ago. Lyndsey has a cat named Willow and a dog named Apollo. The two sports she likes to play are volleyball and softball. Her favorite subjects in school are English, science and math. Her favorite places to be are Bishop and the Pacific Ocean.)

Photo by @joannepederson on Instagram

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14 hours ago

Thank you to the Fairgrounds!!Let's give it up for our local Fairgrounds to step into a summer full of safe outdoor fun; featuring more space for RV and tent camping, plus big events like Mule Days, California High School Rodeo, a Drive-In and Tailgate Concert series - all at the Tri County Fairgrounds, in Bishop! They're planning for a bigger and better year, bigger stage, better sound, bigger acts, and better seats! 🎥🍿--

#inyocounty #tricountyfairgrounds #driveinmovie
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Thank you to the Fairgrounds!!

2 days ago

Look at this sweet foal that was born yesterday!! 😍 Quite a Mother’s Day gift!

Photo by Julie Faber
#visitbishop
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Look at this sweet foal that was born yesterday!! 😍 Quite a Mother’s Day gift! 

Photo by Julie Faber
#visitbishop

Comment on Facebook

Awww. Congratulations momma

Hi sweet baby.❤️

Sweet baby horse.

Aww adorable

Truly beautiful ....well done Mummy ❤

Beautiful!!!

Beautiful horses!

Que belleza 😊 me encanta todo lo que tenga que ver con los caballos, lindo y hermoso día

Sara Kvaas ... not sure if you follow this page, given how we love Aspendell!

Beautiful

💞

Sweetheart.

So pretty.

So cute

Ohhhh cute!

Awww 🥰

❤️🐎❤️❗️

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5 days ago

Wishing you and your littles a happy Friday and a wonderful weekend!! ❤️

#visitbishop
Photo by Betsy Forsyth
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Wishing you and your littles a happy Friday and a wonderful weekend!! ❤️

#visitbishop
Photo by Betsy Forsyth

Comment on Facebook

Always enjoyed fishing the canal.

Love Bishop and the Sierras

So beautiful and amazing pictures thanks for sharing 🙂🙂❤❤

My favorite place 😍🤗

We went a couple of years ago maybe 3 yrs ago what fun times we had there🤗

Beautiful

I think the big Brownies got a few of those

That's so cute.

Love that canal

Beautiful

Thank you 😊

Put any campfire completely out!

Sweet .

Be there soon

❤️😍

So many wonderful memories there!

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6 days ago

Last year... Please #RecreateResponsibly!!!Remember this from last year? The smoke was horrific, and most of the fires weren’t even right here. Please remind ANYONE that is going camping, be it here in Inyo County, or elsewhere, to PLEASE BE CAREFUL WITH FIRE!!

Earlier this week Mammoth Lakes Fire Department responded to TWO different fires that started because campfires were not extinguished properly (one was a dispersed camping fire, and the other was in an area where fires are prohibited)!! It is going to be a tough year with the dry conditions, so we need to act accordingly!! Extreme fire conditions already exist. If you make a fire, please do it in a campground where there are fire pits, and make sure it is COMPLETELY out.

Please #RecreateResponsibly !!!
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Last year... Please #RecreateResponsibly!!!

Comment on Facebook

We need to stop the lightening and get rid of the power lines. No more electricity 🥰

Just everybody use common sense. And don't forget to pick up after yourselves. Leave no trace. <3

It gripes my ass when people just don't care. It doesn't take rocket science to put out a camp fire and to know how dry it is and we have international signs where people around the world know what they mean even when they can't read. They have no heart or respect for life animal's or human. I pray we don't have a repeat of last year.

It was awful, be careful out there. Be mindful of nature.

Its sound like it will be a dry summer across the west.....be careful....barb

Beautiful

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7 days ago

If you are wondering what it's looking like up Big Pine Creek, here is a shot from a couple of days ago. It is the view up the South Fork of Big Pine Creek from the North Fork trail. Thank you to Alan Haight for this stunning shot!!

We welcome you to send your beautiful photos to us in Messenger, or on Facebook or Instagram make sure to tag us #VisitBishop! Thank you!

#visitbishop #RecreateResponsibly #mindfultraveler #bigpinecreek
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If you are wondering what its looking like up Big Pine Creek, here is a shot from a couple of days ago. It is the view up the South Fork of Big Pine Creek from the North Fork trail. Thank you to Alan Haight for this stunning shot!! 

We welcome you to send your beautiful photos to us in Messenger, or on Facebook or Instagram make sure to tag us #VisitBishop! Thank you! 

#visitbishop #RecreateResponsibly #mindfultraveler #bigpinecreek

Comment on Facebook

Gosh this is beautiful!

Some of the most rugged terrain I've ever seen is up that canyon! Truly an amazing part of the Sierras.

Have hiked in this region. So beautiful

I highly recommend visiting Bishop. So much to see and do. 🤠

My old stomping grounds!💕

I LOVE BISHOP! ❤

Love the picture

Went as far as june lake

Gorgeous!

Love it there!

Beautiful

Beautiful

Beautiful!🏔

Beautiful!

Nice

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