David joins rlab

New lab arrival David drives cross-country to Berkeley

As of late July, rlab’s newest member, graduate student David Adelhelm, has arrived in sunny Berkeley, California — though that may not be the way he thinks of it, hailing from the Sunshine State itself. Before leaving Florida on a cross-country road trip with his father, David reports that the temperatures were already surpassing 90 degrees in Orlando.

On the way to the Bay, they hit up a few major landmarks. First up: the Sandia Mountains just outside of Albuquerque, New Mexico. After a 10 minutes cable car ride up to the base of the mountain, they hiked around the montane forests, reaching an altitude of 11,000 feet.

Their next big stop was at the Kelso Dunes near Kingman, Arizona. Leaving Kingman around 4:00 a.m., David and his dad were able to catch the sunrise on their hike up the massive sand dunes — an experience David thoroughly recommends.

Finally, they stopped at Big Sur, where David said he mostly wandered around taking pictures of ferns (see photos below).

But David also says the trip was tougher than he expected — the longest distance covered in a day was the 1100 miles between New Orleans, Louisiana and Albuquerque, New Mexico, and David jokes that the experience of driving 100 miles without seeing anyone has caused him to rethink his plans in the event of a zombie apocalypse (it now involves a bunker in Arizona’s Sonoran Desert). However, David thankfully did not have to execute on that blueprint and is now settling into his new apartment. Cheers to his safe arrival and his new home in the Rothfels Lab!

When he wasn’t taking pictures of plants for iNaturalist, David snapped a few photos of the views from the Sandia Mountains.

 

David at the Kelso Dunes in Arizona

 

One of the many ferns David saw in Big Sur

 

 

 

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