Wild Mountain Salve ~ White Fir & Lodgepole Pine, featuring Yarrow & Mullein

In early September, as the summer heat had begun to recede and the early fall thunderstorms were about to begin, the High Sierras called my father and I away from the cities and off to an adventure in the woods. I was craving a new journey and a desire to meet any flora which might come home for new botanical creations, so my father brought me to a location he had only visited once, almost a decade ago. A place that was to become one of my new favorite lakesides of the central western High Sierra mountains. We put together up our backpacking gear, tied the kayaks to the roof of the van, and set off toward whatever experience our trip was to become.

Welcome to the lakeside.




Early morning winds so light that the reflections in the crystal clear water gave the illusion of the the still sky never ending.  We fitted and strapped our gear to the kayaks and begun our paddle out to explore the many islands, looking for a place to set up camp.

Found the perfect place, with our off the path driveway and private parking…
hammock chill 3
Plenty of room for our hammocks as well…

With campsite secure, time for exploration and contemplation.


me at lunch

And the flora adventures begin.

flower arrival 2
Yarrow, Plantian and Rumex mixed among grasses…

There were two dominate conifers surrounding the lake, the White Fir and the Lodgepole Pine. Mixed among them, a small amount of Douglas Fir and isolated, struggling Incense Cedar who were a bit above their 7000ft altitude line. Mazanita crept low along the cracks in open granite, and wildflowers grew in the shaded and moist grasses along the shoreline. Underneath the trees, along disturbed and hard compacted soils, the plant Mullein stood taller than any brush.

The White Fir ~ Abies concolor

look at spruce
A stunning tree we spotted from our kayaks and came to shore for a closer look…
spruce cones
Attempting to capture the beauty of young green cones as they sparkle with resin in the moring sun…
reach for spruce
Reaching up, wishing I was 100ft tall…

The Lodgepole Pine ~ Pinus Contorta

lodgepole needles
A close-up. These beautiful trees can be seen full and tall in almost every other picture of the lake…

Throughout our journey, I continued to see a form of disrespect that ripped at my heart. The cuts human knives and axes gave, making the trees bleed sap in excess amounts, their attempt to close their wounds quick enough to protect against infection or disease.

sad tree3sad tree4sad tree2

Mullein ~ Verbascum ssp.

mullein 1


Yarrow ~ Achellia millefolium


Home and time to put my gatherings to craft.

lodgepole resin
Lodgepole and White Fir resin. Frozen is an easy to grind into a power without getting sticking hands…
mountian salve set up
Yarrow powder, dried Mullein, beeswax, cocoa butter and shea butter…

Welcome to my completed salves!

mountain balm


Can be found on Etsy here

Created with: White Fir and Lodgepole pine Resin, Beeswax, Shea & Cocoa Butters. Apricot, Avocado & Coconut Oils. Yarrow and Mullein Infused Sweet Almond Oil & Pure Essential Oils.

Deeply moisturizing, stimulates cellular regrowth, anti inflammatory & anti-fungal properties, reduction of rash & bruises. A wonderful sealant. Very long lasting. A little goes a long way.

I often have great reviews on this creation from people who do physical activities that takes wear on their hands, such as jobs that require lots of hand washing, gardening, rock climbing, acrobatics, or just plain dry hands, elbows and feet.

Products containing resin can at times have the resin crystalize (like honey!) Just rub softly between hands and the clear or amber crystals should melt away.

When cold, containing beeswax, this salve can also be a bit firm. To begin use I take the back of my nail to break into the beautiful smooth top layer and the salve becomes soft in the warmth of the hands.

Made in small, fresh batches, all natural, wildcrafted, home and handmade, no chemicals, no preservatives. Healthy for the body and soul.

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