Plants loosely cespitose. Culms often curved, bluntly trigonous, 5-15 cm, smooth-angled distally. Leaves: basal sheaths brown; ligules 0.4-1.6 mm; blades folded to involute, ± equaling culms, 0.8-2.2(-2.5) mm wide. Inflorescences 1-1.8 cm; spikes ca. 8-15, essentially indistinguishable in dense globose to ovoid head. Pistillate scales reddish brown to dark brown, ± translucent with broad whitish hyaline margins, broadly ovate, ± equaling perigynia, apex obtuse to acute, body shiny. Anthers 1-1.5 mm. Perigynia dark brown, finely 5-9-veined abaxially, faintly veined or essentially veinless adaxially, clearly inflated, broadly elliptic, 3.6-5 × 1.9-2.6 mm, delicate and membranous, shiny; stipe to 0.2 mm or essentially absent; beak poorly defined, 0.6-1.1 mm, smooth or slightly scabrous-margined. Fruiting Jul-Sep. Dry alpine tundra, especially scree slopes, uncommon and local; 3600-4000 m; Colo., Utah. Some collections of Carex perglobosa from Utah show some characteristics of C. vernacula (A. Cronquist et al. 1972+, vol. 6).