Whether sifting through sand, or scrambling over a rocky shore, it's about finding treasures in every day. 

A Fairy Tale

Remember the Frost Fairies? They were making wonderful creations during cold, calm weather.

Well, the weather warmed up and started raining and that is very, very bad for Frost Fairy wings. First the rain washes the delicate powdery color off of the wings. The powder reduces wing drag and without it the fairies have to flutter their wings twice as fast. After a few days of rain the fairy’s wings begin to soften, and won’t support the fast fluttering. Did you know that fairies grow new wings often? Well, at least in the rainforest of Southeast Alaska they do. When their wings start to get soggy the fairies go deep into the forest. They fly high up in the trees, then fold their wings behind themselves, and dive right down into the moss, breaking the old wings off.

Fairy wings on soft moss.

Fairy wings on soft moss.

No, it doesn’t hurt, and the fairies love being in the soft moss. They take some time to weave new clothes out of interesting lichens, sing to waterfalls, and happily dance under the trees while they grow new wings.

More discarded fairy wings.

More discarded fairy wings.

Those wings will be ready just in time for more cold weather so that the Frost Fairies can decorate your windows, kiss raindrops into snowflakes, and grow gardens of crystals.

A frost crystal garden made by the Frost Fairies after they watched cartoons through a window they were decorating.

A frost crystal garden made by the Frost Fairies after they watched cartoons through a window they were decorating.

I was in the forest shortly after the Frost Fairies dove, and I was amazed by how many of them there were. I didn't see any fairies, but I saw lots of wings. Look at their wings, still beautiful, but much too flimsy after being wet for days.

Frost fairy wings Alaska

Yes, I agree, people of lesser familiarity with the ways of fairies would tell you that these are the spent leaves of the queen’s cup lily (Clintonia uniflora), so nod when they tell you that, and then listen closely near waterfalls for the sound of Frost Fairies singing.

This has made me very aware of how little I know about Frost Fairies. If you know something about them then please share it with all of us in the comments.

Flitting merrily about,

Alaska Beachcomber

A window beautifully frosted with swirls and fans.

If you enjoy seeing frost crystals click on the links below: