Bighorn sheep on Highway 74 October 2014

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

Friday, June 29, 2012

More of the Pacific Crest Trail

Tuesday, when I had to drive up the mountain for my horses' lesson, I stopped and dropped water off on the Pacific Crest Trail, where it crosses Highway 74 near Anza, CA.  I hiked quite a way back.  There weren't any fresh tracks on the trail.  It was a relatively cool morning, but it's already hot here in the desert and I have errands to run, so I'll stay home today...:-(  This is what I saw Tuesday morning.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Fence and Sierra Nevada~Friday's Fences~062912

This is just one of the many Western fences we saw on our trip to the Sierra Nevada.  This was on the way to the Twin Lakes outside Bridgeport, CA.  Hubby looked on a google map and discovered that these lakes are right over the mountains from Yosemite, on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada.  Friday's Fences for June 29, 2012.  To visit Friday's Fences, please go to:

Blue jays~Nature's Notes~062812

I really miss the blue jays who were up in the cabin.  I believe the same species is up in Idyllwild~Stellar's jays.  They were huge!  The first morning I awoke at 5:15 a.m., one of them was hanging on the frame of the kitchen window, peering in at me!  I'm sure he was thinking, "FEED ME!", which I promptly did.  I put peanuts out all along the railing and sat and watched.  A momma squirrel came down from the tree right next to the porch and I counted 5 blue jays soon appeared and EVERY peanut disappeared. I really enjoyed watching the antics of the blue jays.  Sometimes one would pick a peanut and then put it back and take another one!  There was also a hierarchy among them.  There were a couple timid ones, but there were also a couple of huge males.  I awoke every morning early up at the June Lake cabin to eagerly feed them their peanuts.  I miss them.  My scrub jay is still in our neighborhood (for 3 years now...) and I put out peanuts and acorns for him when we arrived safely home.  Nature Notes for June 28, 2012.  Ge on over to Nature Notes at:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Road to Benton~Our World Tuesday~062612

As we drove the road from Mono Lake to the White Mountains, Highway 120, we left the ponderosa forest and came to the red road country.  We had both never been on this road before and we were amazed by its beauty.  There were very few cars on it.  We ended up in Benton Hot Springs and Benton, which really aren't very big towns!  Our World Tuesday for June 26, 2012.  To visit OWT, please go to:

Monday, June 25, 2012

The range of light

Yes, the Sierra Nevada are ALL about the range of light.  Once again, I didn't check my camera setting until the end of yesterday when we were out at the Alabama Hills, so most of my photos were once again overexposed.  When, to my horror, I discovered that I'd set it on auto ISO, I quickly adjusted the settings and took this photo.  I had it on auto ISO in the morning, when I was taking pics of the birds through the kitchen window, which is totally unnecessary to do while out in bright sunlight!  Believe me, I've learned my lesson!  However, I did get this pic before the sun went down completely behind the Sierra Nevada.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

How sick was I?

This sick.  "GO AWAY!"  Hubby took this photo yesterday.  I was still pretty miserable with my cold and it was all I could do just to sit in front of his laptop! I fell asleep for two hours that feeling much better today!

Mono Craters

We drove up to Bridgeport for sandwiches for lunch and decided to return to the June Lake cabin.  It was extremely windy yesterday and I wasn't feeling well AT ALL.  We ate lunch in the cabin and I took a 2 hour nap!  But, by late afternoon, I was ready to venture out again.  After all, yesterday was our last full day in June Lake...So, we drove out to Mono Lake and the south tufa.  Unfortunately, hubby had adjusted my camera to take photos of the birds on our porch in the dappled sunlight and put it on auto adjust for the ISO and ALL my Mono Lake photos were overexposed!  I returned it to my preferred setting, but the birds are already here this morning, including a momma woodpecker and her chick!  Anyway, after Mono Lake, we drove out to the Mono Craters and the road toward Benson.  We may take that road this morning after we leave the cabin and head down to Lone Pine.  Here are a couple of pics from the Mono Craters.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Eerie cloud~Skywatch Friday~062312

Hubby and I were driving west on the Sonora Pass yesterday afternoon when we both noticed a few white clouds developing overhead.  Hubby remarked, "Oh, look, that cloud looks like a banshee!" (he being Irish would notice that...) I took 2 photos of it and when I checked on my viewfinder, everything was black.  I asked him to check my settings.  THIS is what I photographed (bottom photo).  His is the top.  Eerie, eh?  SkyWatch Friday for June 23, 2012.  To visit Skywatch Friday, please go to:

Friday, June 22, 2012

Sonora Pass

We drove to Bridgeport today for lunch and then drove up the Sonora Pass.  If you haven't driven up this pass and you ever get a chance, do it!  Be warned, however, that it crests at about 10,000 feet.  And, it is a VERY narrow two-lane road.  Tall vehicles and campers are NOT recommended.  They just wouldn't be able to make some of the turns and the winds today were pretty wild.  However, if you drive it by car, you won't have any problems. There are beautiful cliffs and the Walker River runs along the road.  You can see mountains of the Sierra Nevada and you can see trees all the way.  The Stanislaus River flows down the west side of the Sierra Nevada and the Walker River flows down the eastern side.  When we last took the pass, we came from the west.  Today, we drove west and saw things we hadn't seen last time.  Here are some scenes from today. Unfortunately, I got a headache and hubby was out of breath, so we didn't drive to the summit today.  And, yes, my cold is actually worse.

Hetch Hetchy before the dam

I was so intrigued by the story of the Hetch Hetchy dam that I went back and googled "Hetch Hetchy before the dam" on Google images.  Obviously, these aren't my photos.  They show a beautiful valley which I believe John Muir described as second only to Yosemite in its grandeur.  Ahhh....those were the days!  Here are a few of the images that I found.  If you like, you can do your own search.

Hetch Hetchy from the other side

Hubby actually took these photos (see my post below).  He went through the tunnel and walked along the shoreline on the other side of the reservoir.  He has a wide angle lens and can capture more of the scenery.

Hetch Hetchy Dam

Hubby and I drove through Yosemite national park yesterday and when we came to the intersection to either go down into the valley or go toward San Francisco, we decided to drive out to the Hetch Hetchy dam and reservoir.  I'd been there once as a child, but I didn't really remember it.  So, off we went.  It's a good thing hubby is 62 now and has his national parks adventure pass!  He's really handy to bring along!  (...just kidding...)  I really didn't know what to expect and I was amazed by the size of the reservoir. It's quite a drive back to it and you have to check in and register at the ranger's booth, both coming and going.  They give you a card to put on your dashboard.  I imagine it's because of all the political activities opposing the dam.  Once we got to the dam and parked, we both were amazed at the amount of water spilling out.  There is an electricity-generating station further down the river and at one point, hubby took a photo looking all the way to the ocean (couldn't see it...too far away!)  I just hope the citizens of San Francisco appreciate what was destroyed in order to bring them water.  And that's ALL I have to say about that!  Here are some pics of the dam and reservoir.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Swallowtail butterflies~Nature Notes~062012

We've seen a lot of swallowtail butterflies up here in the Sierra Nevada.  I found this one off our favorite road in Lone Pine when we were driving up on Sunday.  I have also seen several fly by our cabin near June Lake.  Unfortunately, I'm down with a bad cold and headache today, so this is a "zero" day for sightseeing, no photographs.  I hope I'm okay tomorrow because we still want to get to Bodie and Yosemite.  Nature Notes for June 20, 2012.  To visit Nature Notes, please go to:

40 degrees this morning

Yup.  Last night was definitely colder than the previous one.  I can feel it this morning.  The blue jays were squawking at 5:00 a.m. and the squirrels were out looking for peanuts and food by 5:30 a.m.  Good thing I'm an early riser!  Unfortunately, I've picked up a darn COLD and I feel miserable today...we're supposed to drive out to Bodie state park this afternoon, so I'm hoping to just rest this morning and maybe take a nap. Ahhhh....the joys of vacation!  It sure is nice being out of the 111 degree desert heat, however!  Right now 5 blue jays are out on the porch and 1 squirrel is eating the sunflower seeds I put out!  Here are a couple of scenes from Lake Marie, which is above Mammoth Lakes at over 8,000 feet, yesterday afternoon.  No, I didn't take these...hubby did, with his wide angle lens.  While I LOVE my 55-200 mm zoom, there ARE times when a wide angle captures a scene better, like here.  It should be 36 degrees tomorrow morning up here.  What a relief from the 109 degrees down in the desert!

Photos of Horseshoe Lake

Hubby kindly provided the only photo of Horseshoe Lake from yesterday afternoon.  I was too busy reading the warning signs about bears in the area!  You can see how low the lake is...

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Horseshoe Lake, Mammoth, CA

Horseshoe Lake is an interesting place.  First, there's a gate which is sometimes closed.  Second, it has signs all around it warning people of a carbon dioxide buildup.  Fortunately, today it was windy, so we didn't have to worry about passing out from carbon dioxide poisoning.  Phew!  The lake itself was extremely low.  Hubby wandered off to take photos of the lake, but I was more interested in the trail (the Mammoth Trail) which led up to the Pacific Crest Trail.  That whole section was burned out from a fire and it was eerie at sunset.  And, yes, this is bear country.  I was so busy reading the sign about bear cannisters that I didn't realize hubby was waiting for me at the car!  All photos taken at Horseshoe Lake, above Mammoth Lakes, CA.

Pacific Crest Trail hikers

We stopped for breakfast in Lone Pine yesterday morning.  We arrived about 9:30 a.m. and immediately saw a group of 4 PCT hikers walk by.  I spotted another young man with his backpack shortly thereafter.  We eat breakfast at a little cafe called "The Totem Pole".  They have good food and fresh coffee.  Then, we headed up to Bishop, to stop at the bakery there in town.  But first, we stopped at the JC Penney in Bishop. I LOVE that store and we can always find something to buy there.  It isn't very big, but they carry an excellent assortment of the right kind of clothes for the Sierra.  I bought 4 tops and 2 pair of capri-like shorts, since I was STUPID and only brought one pair with me (it was 91 degrees in Bishop yesterday!)  Two hikers came up to me in the store and asked about the bus schedule.  I told the girl that I was a tourist, but she could check with the cashier.  The guy did that and they were off on their way.  It isn't a heavy snow year for the Sierra, but a lot of hikers get off in either Lone Pine or Bishop.  It's windy here this morning (near June Lake) and I'm thinking about heading over to Silver Lake to take photos while hubby sleeps.  Here are some pics of the hikers and the town of Lone Pine from yesterday.