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2011 Adventures

Updated:  31-Dec-2011



Wow... another year... what a splendid gift!

Magnificent Saguaro cactus... somehow managing to grow out of rocks, near Tucson:

saguaro in the rocks

Saguaro-covered hillsides in Saguaro National Monument:

saguaro hills

What amazing graceful beauty!

cactus 1-2

hillside 1-2

Sunset in Bear Canyon, east of Tucson:

bear canyon sunset


Next... heading off toward the Salton Sea and Palm Springs in southern California.

Salvation Mountain, located just south of the Salton Sea in Southern California, is a rather amazing place, created on a sandy hillside by Leonard Knight in his on-going praise of God, encouraging loving-kindness for all. To get a sense of the size, the "O" in the word God on top of the hill is about 3 meters (10 ft) tall. It's all made with dirt, adobe, wood, and thousands and thousands of cans of donated paint.

salvation mountain 1

Here's a close-up of some of the words:

chart 1

Inside a new portion of Leonard's monument:

salvation mountain 2

Leonard's truck

:truck 1

Leonard's mailbox:

leonards mailbox

Welcome sign along the road:

leonard welcome


Then off to Palm Springs for a few days.

This is Palm Canyon, south of Palm Springs, California. Date palms needs a lot of water, so they grow quite happily in this canyon which has streams fed from the nearby southern California mountains:

palm canyon 2

palm canyon 1-3

palm canyon 1-2


Sand dunes in Southern California, east of Brawley. It's like being on another planet. Nothing but sand as far as the eye can see.

sand dunes



A little chilly when arrived back in Colorado...  -23 deg C (-10 deg F), and it's nearly noon:

chilly day

Very chilly, but very pretty, view out of my kitchen window:

snowy chilly day

Cute little fox that I saw this morning, out my bedroom window:

fox 2-1




Broken ice in splendid geometrical patterns on Buttonrock Reservoir near Lyons Colorado: 

buttonrock ice flows

And then off to Arizona to get warm!

tucson hills 3-1

When Colorado is covered with ice and snow, it's always so amazing to go to Arizona and see the flowers springing to life.

 flower 3-1 flower 3-9 flower 3-3 
 flower 3-4  flower 3-5 flower 3-6
 flower 3-8 flower 3-7 flower 3-2
 flower 3-10 flower 3-11 flower 3-12 
 flower 3-13 flower 3-14 flower 3-15
 flower 3-16 flower 3-18 flower 3-17 
 flower 3-19 

Such delightful symmetry in nature... such as this cactus:

cactus 3-1

red flowers 3-1

At this time of year, there are many streams and pools of water in the Arizona desert:

tanque verde-1

Stream meandering amidst the saguaro cactii:

tanque verde-2



Arizona wildflowers in early April. What magnificent colors in the cactus blooms!

flowers 4-1 flowers 4-3 flowers 4-2
flowers 4-4 flowers 4-5 flowers 4-6
flowers 4-7 flowers 4-8 flowers 4-9
flowers 4-10 flower 4-11 flower 4-12

Petroglyphs along the trail leading to Wasson Peak, west of Tucson:

petroglyphs 4-1

Magnificent red rock formations near Sedona, Arizona:

sedona 4-1

sedona 4-2

And then back home to Colorado, where the spring snows are melting and a few wildflowers are just beginnng to open:

flowers co 4-1  flowers co 4-4 flowers co 4-2
flowers co 4-3


A lot more wildflowers opening up, at least down low in the flatlands of Colorado in May. The mountains are still larely covered with snow.

flowers co 5-7

flowers co 5-9 flowers co 5-2 flowers co 5-3
flowers co 5-4 flowers co 5-5 flowers co 5-1
flowers co 5-8 flowers co 5-6 flowers co 5-10
flowers co 5-11 flowers co 5-13 flowers co 5-12


I really enjoy hiking in Colorado during the summer, and have been delighted by the wildflowers which are beginning to open in June. The snows have just melted in many areas, so the flowers are only beginnig to open. Here are a few examples:

flowers colorado 6-1 flowers colorado 6-2 flowers colorado 6-3
flowers colorado 6-4 flowers colorado 6-5 flowers colorado 6-6 
flowers colorado 6-7 flowers colorado 6-8 flowers colorado 6-9




Still a lot of snow in the high country, but quite beautiful at lower elevations:

mountain view 7-1

A few wildflowers and hillside near Estes park Colorado:

flowers colorado 7-1 flowers colorado 7-2 flowers colorado 7-3

mountain view 7-2

There are so many elk around Estes Park Colorado that they just stroll along the road!

elk 7-1

Santa Cruz lake in northern new Mexico:

santa cruz lake 7-1

July wildflowers and cactus in northern New Mexico:

flowers nm 7-1 flowers nm 7-2 flowers nm 7-3
flowers nm 7--4 flowers nm 7-5 flowers nm 7-6
flowers nm 7-7 flowers nm 7-8 flowers nm 7-9 
flowers nm 7-10 flowers nm 7-11 flowers nm 7-12 
flowers nm 7-13 flowers nm 7-14 flowers nm 7-15 
flowers nm 7-16 flowers nm 7-17 flowers nm 7-18

Parts of Bandelier National Monument were burned in a forest fire in July, and as the fire consumed old dead trees, the fire was so intense that the old dead tree stumps were burned completely out of the ground!

stumps 7-2

stumps 7-1

Meandering along a stream in Villanueva State Park, New Mexico:

villanueva 7-1

Bird nests on rock outcropping, along the stream... seems like some sort of bird condominium complex:



Another horned toad! What a delightful critter!

toad 8-1

Such beauty!

butterfly 8-1

Some August wildflowers in northern New Mexico:

flowers nm 8-1 flowers nm 8-2 flowers nm 8-3 
flowers nm 8- flowers nm 8-4 flowers nm 8-5 
flowers nm 8-6 flowers nm 8-7 flowers nm 8-8 
flowers nm 8-9 flowers nm 8-10 flowers nm 8-11 
flowers nm 8-12 flowers nm 8-13 flowers nm 8-14 

Along the Fourth of July trail, near Nederland, Colorodo... a natural wildflower garden at an elevation of about 10,000 ft (3300 m):

fourth of july trail 8-1

fourth of july trail 8-2

fourth of july trail 8-3


Some of the many August wildflowers along the trail:

flowers co 8-1 flowers co 8-2 flowers co 8-3 
flowers co 8-4 flowers co 8-5 flowers co 8-6 
flowers co 8-7 flowers co 8-8 flowers co 8-9 
flowers co 8-10 flowers co 8-11 flowers co 8-12 
flowers co 8-13 flowers co 8-14 flowers co 8-15 
flowers co 8-16

These Elephant Head flowers always delight me!

elephant head

This flower looks like turkey heads to me! (but has the rather unattractive name of Parry Lousewort):

parry lousewort



Spetember in the Colorado mountains is so beautiful, especially the brilliant shimmering gold of the Aspen trees

aspen 9-1

aspen 9-2

aspen 9-3


Colorful fall foilage along the creek in Poudre Canyon;

colors 9-4

A few new wildflowers showing up in September...

flower  9-1 flower co 9-2


The view out of my kitchen window, looking to the south-west:

view 10-1

The Aspen trees in the high Colorado mountains are now at their peak of color:

aspen colors 10-1

A couple of wildflowers are just now blooming in mid-october, apparently being fooled by the nice weather:

flowers 10-1 flowers 10-2

Then, we suddenly had a very wet, heavy snow snowstorm which broke a lot of trees, including this one in my back yard. This part of the tree landed in my yard.. the other half of the tree landed on my neighbor's roof!

broken tree 10-1



Ahhh... now that the snow has melted, it's apparent that the tree broke because it was rotting inside:

tree 11-1

Not much else happening in November... just cold and frequently snowing.



In Saguaro National Park, east of Tucson, what splendor! Blue sky, mountains, desert sands and the magnificent saguaro cactus:

saguaro 12-1

A long-legged desert jackrabbit, at dusk:

saguaro 12-2

Another view of the grandeur in Saguaro National Park:

saguaro 12-3


.... more adventures to come... (God willing)....