Thanks to a book I am reading, Eating Stone by Ellen Meloy, I am a little obsessed with our local mountain goats. (Oreamnos americanus). Meloy’s book is about desert bighorn sheep but her descriptions of them in Eating Stone makes me think about the Juneau goats. There should be a clutch of them grazing on the rock slopes near the glacier so Aki and I heading toward Nugget Falls to spy on them. I stop often to photograph the myriad of icebergs that now litter to surface of Mendenhall Lake. You’d expect them to make the best models but I found them outclassed by willow catkins. Even though rain-soaked and already going to seed, they look like complex alien fruit.
The goats are a no show but on our return to the car we run into a beautiful toddler enjoying her rubber boots, yellow slicker, and red umbrella. She entertains herself with a little umbrella dance until Aki barks. Then she stands at attention next her family’s yellow retriever and laughs at my little poodle-mix.