Wednesday, December 6, 2017

LOTS HAPPENING AROUND HERE

Some changes happening this year.  Our main ride leader has retired from that spot and it appears to be mine now.  I've been leading the Monday and Thursday club rides and making them a little more challenging than the Tuesday rides I led last year.  It is quite different not having Old Blue along to temper the difficulty.  On our first club ride, we went by Blue's memorial to pay our respects.
We went to the Florence Light up Parade last Friday evening and they put on a pretty respectable parade.  It lasted about forty minutes and there was a large appreciative audience lined up all along Main Street.
We have finally lost the extra hot weather we'd had since arriving October 31.  In fact yesterday was downright cool with our high of 13C (56F).  We even had a short shower about 9 pm last night which may have broken the 100 plus days without measurable  precipitation.  Depends if it was just localized or wide spread.  It wasn't even in our forecast.  We really need a lot more rain to knock the dust down and provide some moisture for the flowers to bloom in early spring.  At 2 pm today it is 22C (71F) with a cool breeze.
I have a ladder borrowed and hope to get our Christmas decorations up this afternoon.  We bought a big ham the other day and had a nice lunch Saturday with friends Ken and Marie and Richard and Judy, followed by cards.
There was some excitement in the park next door the other night when a double wide caught fire.  It seems the owners who weren't here yet were having some work done and maybe the contractor left something on or something else happened as it was nearly ten pm when the fire was noticed.  The carport and shed were totalled and the fire burned into the rear and side of the unit.  I imagine it is beyond repair as smoke was coming out all the roof vents.
I took the motor home to The Tire Factory in Coolidge for an oil change the other day and it only cost $41.30 which is over $100 cheaper than it cost me in BC.  So then I took the RZR over for it to be done yesterday.  I supplied the oil and filter and they charged me $10.  Last time I took it to a dealer, in Casa Grande they charged me $100 plus the oil and filter!

For a small town, it is amazing how many people come out to parades in Florence, AZ.  Parades are always held along the old historic Main Street.


Here's a blizzard Florence, AZ style!  I would bet that the vast majority of those attending have never experienced real snow.

These happy little girls were singing Christmas carols as they went along 
They sure know how to decorate their fire truck

Neat little buggy


Three of us went trail clearing last Friday.  Lots of new growth and some of these big old branches were getting too low to get under with the side by sides.  The vegetation is mostly Salt Cedars which are considered a weed species down here because they suck so much water.  Lots of thorny plants too like Mesquite.  This would be me, by the way, taken with my camera by friend Richard.

After the trail clearing we went up to the saddle to admire the view.  This is why I wanted to keep the trail open.  As you can see, it was a dark cloudy day.

If you look closely, you can see the railway trestle where it comes out of a tunnel

The Gila River is down in those trees

Looking to the south

Mitzy and I went for a walk out in the desert one evening and caught a bit of the sunset

Monday's ride was to the Reymert Mine which we call the Square Coke Ovens.  You can see the atvs off to the left.

Closer view

Starting to get a hint of fall colour.  There was actually a bit of running water under those trees.  Quite surprising since it has been over 100 days since measurable precipitation in this area.

A couple of Sharp-Shinned Hawks across the street from the motor home yesterday morning.


A tree of Doves with a Flicker taking the top spot

The Flicker

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

COMPANY'S GONE

We were up at 6 am this morning and left at 7:25 to drop John and Sue at the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport.  We managed to get by several fender benders on Hwy 60 so hopefully they made it on time.  Scroll down the page to see another post from today with more photos etc.

Some fall colour on the way up Mt Lemmon

Looking way down on our road up Mt Lemmon

A very well camouflaged little toad near the bottom of Mt Lemmon

Bougainvillea flowers

The 85th Florence Jr Parada which consists of riders 18 and under had a neat parade up Main Street

Note the fancy decoration just on the left edge of this photo

Here's a closeup

We enjoyed the little girl's expression

And a younger girl

Loved the flowers

Riding in style

A visiting queen

These dancers put on a good show

What's a parade without clowns

Or Shriners


Later in the day we spotted a Road Runner

A couple of scenic shots from yesterday's ATV ride

This is Superstition Mtn and Weaver's Needle

BOAT RIDE ON CANYON LAKE

Having John and Sue here got us out of our rut a little and we did get out and see some different scenery.

Lichen on the rocks at Poston Butte out behind our park.  John, Sue and I walked from the park to the Butte.

November 19, a really out of sync Saguaro bloom.  Normal bloom time is March to June.  This particular Saguaro was still blooming a week later.   We haven't run across any others in bloom during our travels.  This was near Box Canyon.  

Looking over the bank from the blooming cactus

We drove the car out to the bottom of Box Canyon then walked partway up the canyon.  We were lucky and saw eight Desert Bighorn Sheep.  Aileen had Mitzy on her leash and the sheep didn't pay any attention to us.  However, a cow came wandering along and the sheep went running further up the hill then really kept an eye on the cow.


It was nearing dark when we headed home from Box Canyon so we stopped to admire the moon and sunset behind the Saguaro

Taken from the seat of our RZR.  I doubt I was more than 30 feet away, he didn't fly even when I drove past but he did when the group started past.

While waiting to depart on our boat ride on Canyon Lake I spied these reflections of the boat houses.

I also saw this kitten

Gorgeous day and scenery on Canyon Lake


I took this Curved Bill Thrasher portrait from our table while we were waiting for our lunch after the boat ride 

A couple of later afternoon views of Canyon Lake as we were heading homeward


Found this old ram right beside the road on the way back from Canyon Lake

Along the Apache Trail on the return from Canyon Lake

The north side of Superstition Mtn near Apache Junction and Goldfield