Bear Valley Hot Spring -- Spring 2011

After having a number of trips spoiled by spider mites. Interestingly, this Spring they seemed to have gone on vacation. When present, they glory in digging into your
flesh and leaving itching red welts that generally last for about two weeks. As the 60's song said, "Your gonna need an ocean, of Calamine lotion!"

My read on the 'why' of this situation, is that because of the extreme stream flows this year, the hot spring may have become innundated with cold runoff water for a period,
and either washed them downstream, or they just couldn't deal with the cold. Like me, I think they prefer that 103 degrees of the hot spring (except) for them, it is survival!

Bear Valley Creek(?) from the Trailhead

I have never seen it so bank-to-bank as it is this year.

Even a river Island isn't safe!

The Primary Hot Spring Source (of the two)

I have never seen the Creek(?) in this area before. Usually the goats are grazing here!

One of the two cold water sources that modify the temperature of the main pool

The other cold water source

The creek rages on...

And on...

The primary HS pool. It is heavenly!

Looking back from the main pool to the hot water source!

Ahhhh... home sweet home!

The camp counselor... at least for this visit!

The real reason why he's here. They lick the minerals off the rocks that the HS deposits.

Normally, there are pools below this the main one... not this year. Only river.

And Cocoa-Brownie says, "I thought we'd never get outta here!!

Two final shots of the creek at its highest!