|Guadalupe Columbine blooming|
along the creek in McKittrick Canyon
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
As part of the training we received from park staff, we hiked McKittrick Canyon on Saturday, sharing knowledge with each other along the way. While crossing the stream in McKittrick Canyon, we found this beauty, known as the Guadalupe Columbine.
|Our group crosses the stream in Guadalupe Mountains|
National Park McKittrick Canyon, shortly before we
spotted the Guadalupe Columbine
"Aquilegia Chaplinei Indians cooked the roots of this attractive pale yellow flowered perennial herb and used them as a remedy for bruises; infrequent in shaded crevices, on boulders and calcareous soil of moist canyons, especially in North and South McKittrick Canyon of the Guadalupe Mountains National Park; April-November."
Steve West, in his book Northern Chihuahuan Desert Wildflowers, includes the flower with this additional information:
Crowfoot Family (Ranunculaceae)
"Description: The plant grows up to 19" (48 cm) in height; the leaves are divided. Pale yellow flowers appear from April to November.
Habitat/Range: This columbine is one of the beautiful surprises you may encounter while hiking in the Guadalupe Mountains. Most often, it grows wherever there is permanent water, but it can also be found in moist places where water is not apparent. This species is easily found in McKittrick Canyon in the Guadalupes or in the adjacent Lincoln National Forest at Sitting Bull Falls, CCNP, GMNP.
Comments: Diversion of water from these sites could threaten this locally common species."
The McKittrick Canyon trail is on the Far West Texas Wildlife Trail and is part of the Peak Fitness Challenge (and one of our Texas Mountain Trail Heritage Hikes). Plan to visit Guadalupe Mountains National Park soon!