Tuesday, November 22, 2016


First off, hi to Rose Ann in Salmon Arm.  Your package for Mitzy arrived today and she says thank you.  Glad you are still enjoying my blog.
We installed a large cooling unit with heat strips in the park model the other day and on Sunday, Aileen and I painted the kitchen, living room and hallway.  As soon as this Wednesday, new windows are to be installed which should make for a much comfier experience.  There was a lot of dust inside again this year and those who have installed new windows say their's were clean.  Of course doing the work at $1.35 exchange rate hurts but it may be years before the rate eases hence doing it now.
We went to Tucson on Saturday with friends Mitch and Carol to have lunch at Gourmet Girls Gluten Free Cafe.   We stopped at Sprouts and Trader Joe's while down there to stock up on things they carry.
We had another bit of rain Sunday night which helped lay the dust a bit but if you guys in the northwest could send us some more, the desert plants would appreciate it.  Since there was next to no monsoon rains this summer, if we don't get more rain soon there won't be much of a bloom in the spring, I'm guessing.

Warning!!! Spider photo number thirteen image -  last one

Some views while ATVing

At the north end of South Butte overlooking the Gila River valley 

Trail through the Mesquite and Salt Cedar between the Gila River and South Butte

North and South Buttes

The super moon rising over the hills

Nearly clear of the hills

A bit of whimsy, the super moon through a palm tree later that evening

Our new cooling /heating unit

Red Tail Hawk on our ride the other day

 87 year old Blue doing some rough trail

Out on the trail today, I found this to be a little steeper than last year.  The gravel washed out deeper this year.

Warning!!! Spider photo next

Red Back Jumping Spider.  This was about the best of the dozens of photos I tried as he kept running all over the place.  It probably would have made a good video of me clamoring over rocks trying to keep up and keep my camera very close to the ground since he was pretty small - about one inch long.


Sunday, November 13, 2016


In the absence of the regular leader, I lead the main group of ATVers on Thursday.  We lucked out and saw the hawk up close and two Bighorn ewes that appeared highly pregnant.
Today, my sweet wife drove the CRV while I picked up 97 geocaches along the Florence Kelvin Hwy.  We were both pooped after that and I don't see how some people are claiming to get the whole 300 in one day; they must be tougher than me as well as a lot faster.
I had a room booked in Wickenburg to go riding with a group from here.  We were staying overnight Tuesday and Wednesday with the main ride on Wednesday and a shorter ride Thursday but it got cancelled this evening because the guy who was to lead us put his back out.  Fortunately, my reservation was free cancellation and I was able to do it quickly online.

A crested saguaro seen on our ride the other day.  These mutations are quite rare.

Coming off the Little Spine

Red Tail Hawk

Martinez Mine Road

Bighorn ewe in Box Canyon

Out of season Saguaro bloom

Mitzy and I on our walk this morning

These neat windswept clouds were taken out along the Florence Kelvin Hwy this morning

These two photos are of the little community of Ray, AZ and the huge Ray Mine

The Copper Basin Railway in action

Ray Mine

Tuesday, November 8, 2016


Yes, we're getting immersed in AZ again.  Aileen put on a fancy spread for my birthday on Friday.  I've been riding three times and tonight we had our first monthly ATV club potluck.  We've been cleaning and organizing and planning all manner of things.  I managed to find a near new used bike just down the street to replace my bike that was stolen in Clifton.  I had looked at the same bike earlier in Kmart Casa Grande for $155 and this one was $50.  Lucky find!
A classic desert shot in our riding area.  Saguaro cactus. mesquite, palo verde, brittlebush and cholla

Afternoon light on South Butte

North Butte

The mountains north of the Buttes

The Thumb and Bignose

The sun came out while it was still raining the other day

And just as it quit raining

June, myself and Hiro all have a birthday on November 4 so we celebrate todgether

This is a tiny Fishhook Barrel Cactus

This is a mature Fishhook Barrel Cactus and it is armed and ready to defend itself

The start of Box Canyon is just to the left of the shadow

The Thumb and Bignose

Looking across to our Top of the World trails

We had a nice small group out today

Thursday, November 3, 2016


The photos below were all taken at Canyon de Chelly in Northern Arizona.   Some were taken in mid to late afternoon light (south rim) and others in the morning (north rim).  We found it to be a magical place.  In some ways it was a nicer experience than the Grand Canyon mostly because there were so few people there.  We found that the few people there sort of bonded while viewing the canyon.  Also, there weren't the hordes of tour buses disgorging their loads to plug up the viewpoints.  Often there would only be one or two other couples if in fact we weren't alone.
We had a doozy of a lightning storm overnight and we're in the middle of another right now.  Several groups of ATVers went out this morning and we had a great ride as there was little or no dust.  This was my first ride and people had been telling me how dusty it was so the storm was greatly appreciated by me.

White House Ruins

A large mob of mounted tourists leaving the White House Ruins.  You may have to click on the image to enlarge it enough to see all the horses.

Looking almost straight down at the horses and cottonwood trees

My long shadow in the morning light