Sunday, June 28: Visit to the Beach

Today we took Braeten, our 11 month old Sheltie, to the beach. Then we gave her a bath.

Last weekend we took Braeten to the the beach for the first time in her short but adorable life. She is a very high-energy, high-spirited puppy and Mary Ann thought this would be a good chance to get her some exercise and possibly provide us with some entertainment.

We packed a 20 foot length of half inch rope and a few towels into the truck and drove a few miles south to Gull Point Drive then stopped in a pull off adjacent to a short concrete sea wall and a 20 foot-wide beach. This section of Yellowstone Lake, known as Bridge Bay, is sheltered from the main body of the lake and is normally very calm even on windy days. The 2 inch blips that pass as waves are generally only amplified by the occasional power boat enroute to or from the lake.

The water's not bad

The water’s not bad

Oh what fun!

Oh what fun!

With the rope tied to her collar and the free end in my hand Braeten had plenty of lead to bound around, dig furiously in the coarse wet sand, and chase the sticks I found and tossed to encourage her pursuit. At first she avoided the ones I threw toward the water’s edge, but she gradually became bolder, running into the water up to her chest. We played for about an hour before Braeten finally wound down. By then she was soaking wet from the chest down and covered with sand. When we got back to the trailer we actually had a tired puppy on our hands!

Eighty percent of the trees in Yellowstone are lodgepole pines, a not-particularly hearty tree that has adapted well to the harsh growing conditions in the park. They have shallow roots well suited for the volcanic soil, but rather useless on windy summer afternoons when they fall over. Their reproduction includes a serotinous cone that is sealed with a waxy substance that only opens when exposed to intense heat. Like fire. Every year for about two weeks beginning in mid-June the trees release their yellow pollen. And for about two weeks beginning in mid-June the air is filled with billowing golden clouds that imbue everything in sight with a look of sunset. The pollen also collects is massive pools of swirling yellow on the lake, looking as if vats of paint had been dumped in the water. Including Bridge Bay.

Which brings us back to this weekend’s visit to the beach. And the new puppy we brought home after playing fetch the stick in the water. Pollen is much harder to get out of dog fur than you might imagine.

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One Response to Sunday, June 28: Visit to the Beach

  1. terry weinberg says:

    Poor puppy! I hope she doesn’t suffer from seasonal allergies like daddy.