At 11,500 feet, not much decomposition happens in the crystal-clear glacial-melt cold water about 10 feet / 3 meters down. This trout expired and will slowly decompose over the summer. Maybe it will even last to next spring, given the short summers at high elevation (late June - October).
The greatly-reduced Mt Dana ice field, formerly Mt Dana Glacier. It held its own this year (based on last year’s visit), but I think it is losing mass underneath that isn’t readily visible (large ice caves from melt water). Its relatively north-facing layout helps it resist melting, but the main body has separated from the smaller ice field at right. I’ve hiked up to that level to see the raw rock, which probably has not been visible for 10,000 years or so until perhaps a decade or so ago.
The ice field is much larger than it looks: I got a scare when traversing what I thought was the rocky rubble base, which turned out to be a heavy load of rubble on top of ice having very large caves underneath in places. Shot from a massive moraine that it must have occupied and pushed against the last century in John Muir’s time.
Very much alive, life abounds in the moraine rubble, many flowers, spiders and bugs of all sorts. There is far more life to be found a wide glance would suggest.
With maybe a few decades left in me, this snowpack was melting so fast in mid-August that its lifetime was measured in days: it melted into two chunks near where I stand 2 days later. A hoody with a front pocket is a good place to carry a small lens or two of a kind like Zeiss Loxia, hence the sag.