Over 250,000 acres of the Gila National Forest burned in 2012, the largest wildfire in New Mexico history. Large fires are a natural part of the mountainous, ponderosa pine ecosystem… though it is possible that fire suppression activities, land use, and climate change influenced the massive size of this one.
Two years after the fire, we journeyed into Gila Wilderness to document the New Mexico Remote Spot. Our timing could not have been better! Wildflowers bloomed abundant amid the bunch grasses.
Flowers bloomed low along the canyon bottom, flowers bloomed mid-slope, and flowers bloomed high on the mountain tops. Below are photos of a few of the species we hiked and camped among on our recent expedition.
Possibly our favorite flower, the scarlet gilia, is pictured below. We watched hummingbirds sip nectar from these plants multiple times. A few interesting websites about this flower: Plight of the Pollinators, Bumbleebee nectar thieves, and US Forest Service.