Bighorn sheep on Highway 74 October 2014

Bighorn sheep on Highway 74 October 2014
This big guy crossed the highway, October 2014.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Clouds and road

For some reason, there was very little traffic going up Deep Canyon over the weekend.  Just me and the clouds and a few vehicles.  I like the top photo. This guy was just humming along!  We are DONE, for now, with our monsoon clouds and are back to having dry heat.  I can't wait for the weekend...3 days off school!  Whoo, whoo!  I'll be like my kids last Friday...the door opened at 3:00 p.m. and they ALL ran out!  I'll be running out this Friday!  I'm SO ready for a long weekend!  Temps are "dropping" here...from 114 down to about 109 or 108 over the weekend!

Monday, August 29, 2011

This is how a thunderstorm starts

It started as just a couple of clouds peeking over the mountain.  A couple of hours later, BOOM!  CRASH!  KABOOM!  The thunder was vibrating all over the desert.  This has happened the last two days.  It will be another hot day here in the desert~114's hard to be outdoors in this kind of heat. 

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Thunderhead~SOOC Sunday~082811

I noticed just a couple of thunderheads when I was up at the horse ranch yesterday.  Just two peeking over the mountains nearby...By the time I was driving down the mountain, from the ranch to the desert, through the pinyon forest, more had developed.  NOBODY was on the road, so I was able (for once) to stop and take photos mid-road.  I sometimes do that if there is no traffic and I have my camera right beside me.  It was so quiet yesterday (I'm not sure why...) that I was able to get photos in places that I normally just zip by (like this one).  By the time I got to the desert, the sky was clouding up and we had a thunderstorm by 11:30 a.m., which is very early in the day for us.  No rain, just a lot of thunder.  SOOC Sunday for August 28, 2011.  To see other participants, please go to:

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Sunset at golf resort~Weekend Reflections~082711

Hubby and I grabbed our cameras and headed out to the city-owned golf course last night to check out the sunset.  We don't get the beautiful sunsets that Arizona and New Mexico get, but once in a while, we DO get a spectacular one.  Last night wasn't spectacular one, but it was above average.  Unfortunately, the bugs were so awful and kept flying into our ears!  I used my tripod for my photos, but hubby chose to shoot and run!  Weekend Reflections for August 27, 2011.  That's Mt. San Jacinto in the distance. To view Weekend Reflections, please go to:

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The last full day~SkyWatch Friday ~ 082611

Sunrise on our last full day at Overgaard, on the Mogollon Rim.  SkyWatch Friday for August 26, 2011.  To view other participants in SkyWatch Friday, please go to:

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"F" is for forest~ABC Wednesday~082411

Arizona's forests are much thicker than ours here in Southern California.  I'm only 35 minutes from the pine forest near Idyllwild, CA, but our forests don't have as much undergrowth.  I'd like to say we don't have fires, but we do.  This area of the forest near Forest Lakes, AZ, was hit by the Rodeo-Chediski fire of 2002.  Yes, it is growing back (slowly), as you can see.  It's always sad to see burned forests, especially man-made ones (like that fire).  But, the forest eventually does come back and life does return.  ABC Wednesday for August 24, 2011.  Wish me's the first day of school and it will be 117 degrees here in the desert today!  To see ABC Wednesday, please go to:

Monday, August 22, 2011

First morning on the rim

I awoke before dawn on the first morning at the cabin.  I was excited to get outside and see what I could see.  Of course, I looked up through the pines and this is what I saw.  There's something about the smell of pines in the early morning...ahhhhhhhhh!

Thunderstorm on the Rim

The afternoon we arrived on the rim, there was a thunderstorm developing.  This is out by the area of the Rodeo-Chedeski 2002 fire, looking out over the rim.  It's a very desolate area.  There aren't many roads out this way.  While it looks flat, it is actually about 7,000 feet here. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

"B" things~Sunday stills Challenge~082111

Birds and bones!  I found these at the ranger station up on the Mogollon Rim, in Arizona.  We spent 5 nights there and we stopped at the station on our way up the rim.  They have this interesting collection of bird skeletons, bones, and bird feathers.  Unfortunately, this station was vandalized this spring and many other artifacts were stolen.  The day we were there, they had a Bloodhound, which had been left running in one of the campgrounds for over a week.  He was dehydrated and lucky to be alive because there are BEARS in the forests on the rim.  Sunday Stills Challenge for August 21, 2011.***NOTE*** No, we didn't bring the bloodhound home.  The gals at the ranger station were taking him to the vet the next day and we were up there 5 days.  By the time we went home, it was too early in the morning to stop and get an update on the dog.  I'm sure he either found a foster home or they finally got hold of his owners.***

Friday, August 19, 2011

Mountain thunderstorm~SkyWatch Friday~081911

The afternoon thunderstorms here up on the Mogollon Rim are different from those in the desert.  First, the clouds develop.  Then, a wind comes up.  The temperature drops.  They seem to move in up here every afternoon (at least for the 5 days we've been here).  One morning, I looked out to see a cloudless sky and by afternoon, it was thundering away and raining!  Yes, that does happen in the desert, but we all notice a remarkable change in the humidity there.  I don't notice that up here on the rim.  Everything around the cabin here is nice and green from all the August monsoons.  We did watch the news last night and there were thunderstorms all over eastern Arizona and western New Mexico.  We are enjoying our time up here, but, alas, we head home tomorrow!  SkyWatch Friday for August 19, 2011. To visit SkyWatch Friday, please go to:

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Cooper's hawks~Nature Notes~081811

While we are here, up on the Mogollon Rim, I've discovered some interesting animals.  The first ones I discovered was the family of Cooper's hawks which seem to live in the forest behind the cabins.  Early one morning, I heard, "screech, screech, screech" and went out to investigate.  There were 3 of them in a pine tree...a momma and two youngsters.  Apparently they were getting ready to go out on their morning hunt because right after that, all 3 headed out, across the highway.  Mom and one of the youngins' came back, but the other one didn't.  And she called and she called and she called.  She finally stopped about noon and then started up in the late afternoon, so I went out to investigate.  He/she was back and had a...rodent.  I'm not sure why Mom was chirping.  I notice that when they are around, all the other birds disappear!  I've now seen them every morning and afternoon and they don't seem to stray far from one of the trees out back. I can identify pulling out one's hair...these two keep this mother hawk busy ALL DAY!  She must be exhausted by night!  To read more Nature Notes, please go to: 
***UPDATE***It's now 5:52 a.m. and mom is out there, already calling to the young ones!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fort Apache, Arizona~Outdoor Wednesday~081711

Today hubby and I drove out to Fort Apache, which is in the White Mountain Apache Reservation.  Did you know that during the time it was an active Army fort, it was never attacked?  There were and are no walls or fences around it.  It just sits atop a plateau, with good water running nearby, alone and silent.  Today the grounds are used as a school and we saw some of the students there for the first time.  We usually visit the fort in either the autumn or during spring break!  So, it was nice to have people around!  I wouldn't recommend visiting it during August, however!  It was hot and dry and we got tired and left without taking many photos.  We drove back to Pine Top/Lakeside for lunch and then returned to the cabin to await the coming daily thunderstorm.  It arrived at 8:00 p.m. To see other outdoor scenes, please go to:

Mogollon Rim thunderstorm~That's My World~081611

Yesterday started out perfectly clear in Scottsdale.  As we were driving up the road to the Mogollon Rim, however, thunderheads were developing.  We arrived at our rented cabin about 10:30 a.m. and by 11:30, we had our first thunderstorm and rain of the day.  It was so refreshing to just sit on the back patio and listen to the rain and smell it. We took an afternoon drive over to Show Low to buy groceries for the week and this is what we saw on the way back.  This is the area of one of the many fires in this region.  The 2002 Rodeo-Chedesky fire was the largest in Arizona's history until this year's Wallow fire. The Rodeo-Chedesky fire was actually two separate ones that eventually combined into one. Tomorrow we are driving out to Alpine, which is near where the Wallow fire burned this July.  Thunderstorms are forecast for the week here, so I'll be taking more photos of the thunderheads. That's My World for Tuesday, August 16, 2011. To visit other worlds, please go to:

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Water fun~Sunday Stills Challenge~081411

Obviously this isn't macro, but close-up.  These water things are over at the Desert Ridge Villas in Scottsdale, Arizona.  There is a pool and water play area down by our room.  The water play area has buckets that fill up with water and then splash down, as well as fountains for the kids.  What fun for kids!  The area with the waterfall has a kid's play area with sand, a slide down a gecko, and a fossil dig area!  I mean, if I were a kid, I'd sure want to come here!!!  And, early in the morning, both areas are full of quail, cottontails, and cactus wrens and doves.  I included the bottom photo so that you could see the entire water play area.  Sunday Stills Challenge for August 14, 2011.

Salt River~Scenic Sunday~081411

I got to use hubby's Canon camera yesterday!  He bought a new Canon EOS 7D, so he let me use his "old" one, a Canon EOS Rebel T2i.  Now, my first digital camera was a Canon "point and shoot" and I used that camera for about 6 years.  It went EVERYWHERE with me.  There's something about the Canon sensors which are different from those in Nikons.  The colors seem more true.  So, off we went to the Salt River, from the Bush Highway.  Yes, that's hubby in the middle photo!  Hehehehehe!  I always try to sneak in a few photos of him.  It was late afternoon and thunderheads were over Globe, Arizona.  By the time we stopped at AJ's to pick up dinner, there was a huge thunderstorm over that area.  I'm heading out for my morning walk with the Canon this morning.  It is a whole new mind-set and adjustment for me to be back using a Canon, so I'll have to get used to it! I still have my Nikon and hubby gave me his old D60, so now I have the two Nikons and a Canon.  Scenic Sunday for August 14, 2011.  To visit Scenic Sunday, please go to:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Sunrise this morning

Hubby woke me up at 4:40 a.m. today.  Now, hubby isn't a morning person.  He's quite the opposite.  He'll stay up until midnight and then wake up at 9 a.m....Now, I AM a morning person, but I was snoring still asleep at 4:40, blistfully unaware of what was going on outside our hotel.  A THUNDERSTORM!  Yes!  With lightning, rain, and thunder. So, of course, we both had to sit and watch it.  BOOM!  CRACK! FLASH!  It went on for over an hour, then headed west toward the California border.  And, we got some nice rain.  So, I headed out with my camera as soon as it got light.  Here are some pics of what I saw this morning.  Don't you just love a nice, refreshing rain???? I'm not sure where we are headed today...maybe out to McDowell Mountain to see the old ruins there???

Friday, August 12, 2011

On the way to Arizona...

We saw several dust storms or dust devils along Interstate 10.  I pulled over and hubby leaned out the window to take a few photos of them.  Then, when we neared the Gila Bend turnoff, we saw a huge rainstorm.  I can't wait for the sunset tonight!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Calm~Watery Wednesday~081011

A calm, morning scene at the Desert Springs Marriott in Palm Desert, CA.  I had to drop hubby off there a couple of mornings and I wandered around.  No clouds in the sky, but I like the clear reflection.  Watery Wednesday for August 10, 2011. To see other participants, please go to:

Monday, August 8, 2011

Looking for JUST the right spot~That's My World~080911

I love to watch my horses when they are led down to the arena.  This is their "free time".  They all love to roll and here is Sunni looking for just the right spot in a huge manure pile!  Apparently he found it TWICE!  He does roll all the way over, but after getting one side covered with manure, he got up and rolled the other side.  He is learning to THINK instead of just REACT and I'm proud of his training!  It was windy on this day and I took him out for some work in the round pen and other stuff.  I suddenly realized that the trees' leaves were blowing.  He did spook at the tie rack, but settled right down.  He also spooked a little while I was walking him up to the round pen.  BUT, he didn't spin and bolt.  That's a big step for this horse, who is VERY aware of his surroundings and worries about them.  He's learning to THINK and not just react!  I'm pleased to see this improvement in him...maybe it is just maturity?  That's My World for Tuesday, August 9, 2011. To see other participants, please go to:

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Water on the road after the storm~Weekend Reflections~080611

There were major downpours up in the mountains this week, so I drove up to take a look and just enjoy a summer's rainstorm.  We even got a few drops down here in the desert, but the pinyon forest really got RAIN!  And, after the clouds moved on, this is what was left behind.  Weekend Reflections for August 6, 2011. To see other reflections, please go to:

Friday, August 5, 2011

Flamingos for Fabulous Friday~080511

You know, I spend so much time up in the mountains, that I forget I actually do go to other places!  So, instead of posting more dark and dreary photos today, I decided to add some color for Fabulous Friday!  These flamingos are at the Desert Springs Marriott in Palm Desert.  This is a favorite spot for many local photographers.  I do my morning walks across the street at the city golf course, Desert Willow.  But, I'm always drawn to the birds and the beautiful palms that line their driveway across the street.  So, enjoy the color.  Did you know that flamingos have to be fed a special diet to get their beautiful, pink color?  That's one of the three babies in the bottom photo, standing on one leg.  There were 3 chicks last spring and they all survived.  Fabulous Friday for August 5, 2011.  To visit Fabulous Friday, please go to: