While the term arborglyphs is usually reserved for the tree carvings of Basque and Irish sheepherders who used aspen trunks to communicate with one another came to the United States to tend sheep in places like the Pacific Northwest and Nevada (see a beautiful slide show of Basque arborglyphs from Nevada HERE) there’s a strange poetry to the furtively carved initials and hearts that scar the aspens along the old road to Cripple Creek. Usually little more than crude initials, a heart and perhaps a date, these scratchings, taken as a whole, are less acts of senseless vandalism than amorous expressions inspired in part, no doubt, by the irresistible beauty of the aspens.

We don’t advocate carving into these beautiful and delicate trees (read more about their amazing biology HERE), but we do recommend heading up Old Stage and Gold Camp Roads this week to catch the this year’s breathtaking displa.

The music in this piece is “Song for Obol” by Arborea (who played at the Rubbish Gallery some months back). You can download it for free by clicking on the downward pointing arrow in this player:

 

4 Responses to Aspen Extravaganza

  1. Rigel MacCrikey says:

    400 pictures of graffiti…. most of them illegible…. Why.

  2. Ms. Lin says:

    chill man

  3. terbear says:

    Beautiful pics. You guys are amazingly imaginative and stunning with the lens. Thanks for the biology link too.

  4. Louise says:

    I remember walking down from the top of Pikes Peak one time and meeting up with a young boy with his knife out, carving on an aspen. It was a beautiful day surrounded beautiful trees. I asked the boy if he thought he was making the tree more beautiful by cutting it. He said no but his dad told him it was okay. I agree with Rigel.

News

Shenandoah Brettell
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Many Americans are not scared to reuse old clothes for new Halloween costumes.
 

AP
October 24, 2014 | NPR · The National Institutes of Health in Maryland announced that the 26-year-old who was infected while caring for a Liberian patient, has no detectable virus in her blood.
 

AP
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Within hours of a government announcement last week that a truce had been signed and the release of more than 200 schoolgirls secured, another 25 were kidnapped by Boko Haram extremists.
 

Arts & Life

Bill Franzen
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Earning honors for fiction, nonfiction and young children’s literature, respectively, the writers are the first to win the award. Also: The Bronx’s bookstore returns, while the U.K. shows off doodles.
 

Other Press
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Reporter Giuseppe di Piazza’s debut novel, The Four Corners of Palermo, follows an unnamed young reporter during the brutal early days of the mafia’s conflict with the Italian government in the 1980s.
 

Thomas Dunne Books
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Historian Peter Ackroyd’s new book surveys the history of England from the end of the Tudor era to the Glorious Revolution of 1688 — almost a century of war, debate and transformation.
 

Music

Tinnitus Photography
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Our recurring puzzler for careful listeners, this week featuring a selection of handpicked fills from Sleater-Kinney drummer Janet Weiss. Hear the drum fill (or intro) and match it to the song.
 

Courtesy of the artist
October 24, 2014 | NPR · Recorded with Liz Harris’ voice, a piano and not much else, Ruins achieves striking intimacy, its emotional heft commanding attention throughout.
 

October 24, 2014 | NPR · NPR TV critic Eric Deggans looks at the new documentary, Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown, featuring rare and never-before-seen footage. The film premieres on HBO Monday.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab