Snow and Flowers: Mono County Late Spring

Find beautiful sights of the wintry and warm-weather kind.

Alicia Vennos/Mono County Tourism

PEANUT BUTTER AND CHOCOLATE... go together, well, like peanut butter and jelly, but those are the only offbeat duos that have captured hearts and palates through the decades. People rather like pairing offbeat flavors -- pretzels and caramel, for instance -- and they like experiences that contain some seemingly disparate elements, the kind of things that, when set together, further emphasize the whole. Think of opposite hues on the color wheel paired up (hello, purple and green) and think of snow and flowers.

IT'S TRUE, some frosty flakes have a quick way of ending some delicate buds on the ground, if enough flakes fall and pile up, but seeing a snow-capped peak in the distance, with some bright petals in the foreground, means you can enjoy both and never do the twain have to meet. (So breathe a sigh, flowers; we're not suggesting that snow end your run, just for the sake of an interesting pair-up.) Mono County has a touch of that opposites-attract-ness come late spring, around late May and early June, when wildflowers start popping up in profusion. And not any wildflowers but wowza wildflowers, purply thistle sage and apricot mallow and desert trumpet and peach thorn and a bevy of buds that are the beauties one finds in a higher elevation foothill location. Adding to the scene is that the Sierra can still be holding a lot of snow, way up high, so the thrill of finding a yellow spread of flora with some cold peaks as the backdrop is pretty singular, or at least fairly rare. 

AND YET? For Mono County, that's just the way late spring goes. Sprays of spectacular bloomage on the ground, snow in the far distance, both seeming opposites lending some contrast to the wider vista. Like the place where the chocolate bar dunks into the peanut butter, call Mono County around early June the place where winter and summer have a colorful conversation. Want to know more about the flowers and where to see them? Here's a fine and florid start.

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