Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Gathering Storm

"Monsoon' has arrived in the low desert.

The temperature dropped from 103 degrees to the upper 70's in 20 minutes.
It gets very humid during Monsoon and storms become a regular visitor. On the plus side everything gets very lush and green.
Monsoon lasts a couple of months and it should be fun trying to capture the essence of the desert changes.
It did finally rain as the sun was setting to our right and the rain and lightning moved in from our left.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sunrise on Kitt Peak

Chiricahua National Monument

The grasslands along the road to the monument which is a 35 mile drive from Wilcox Az.
The Chiricahua Mountain Range is another of Arizona's many "Sky Islands."

The "Organ Pipes"Well worth the extra 70 miles you have to drive from Wilcox and back.

Plants and animals from four different ecosystems come together in the Chiricahua Mountains. They are the Rocky Mountains, Sierra Madre Mountains, Sonoran Desert and the Chihuahuan Desert.
We will be headed back to Wilcox in October to do the Rex Allen Days. We will be selling some of my 13x19 framed prints and of course the handmade soaps. I will make sure to make the trip to Chiricahua to do some more photography.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

"Sky Island"

The term "Sky Island" refers to habitat of significant elevation which supports plants and animals that cannot survive in the low desert lands.
Longing to be amongst the green grass, ferns, pine trees and the Aspens we headed for the top of Mt Lemmon.
Truly not what you would expect to find in the middle of the Sonoran Desert.
Heading up to 9125 feet above sea level. It is a bit on the cool side and very refreshing, reminds me of home in New England.
The summit is in sight.
The ski lift is worth the $9.00 to ride to the top.
The view of Tucson from 9125 feet above sea level.
Time to head down. This is the view looking towards Oracle.
Ahhh trees and grass!!!!
Still no bears on this trip!

I will return here many times especially this fall to photograph the Aspen's.
On this trip we saw Yellow Eyed Junco's, Western Bluebird, Stellar Jay's, Red Tailed Hawks, Turkey Vultures, Flicker's and an unidentified hummingbird that visited us at 9000 ft. on the ride up the mountain.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Peace in the Valley

Sometimes it's nice to just be a part of something bigger than yourself, something close to nature.
Sunsets are one of those experiences that last only a short time but have so many different faces.
There's nothing quite like finding a quiet spot and watching to see nature do it's thing as if it's just for you.

An amazing change in the color of the landscape in seconds.
At this point we can tell it will be a good show.
The road rises to meet the setting sun.

On this outing we saw coyote, night hawks, rabbits, many song birds and a Gila Monster.


It's amazing what runs in front of my window on any given day.
It's difficult to get a roadrunner to stand still long enough to take their picture as they are constantly moving.
Usually you just see a fleeting dash across the road up ahead.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Wildlife along McCain Loop Road

Such grace!
Red Tailed Hawk on the hunt.
As soon as we arrived we spotted two coyotes crossing the road. Next we came upon the Red Tail sitting on a Saguaro surveying the surrounding desert. There were many song birds and another small hawk,that looked like a Kestrel but it was gone too quickly to be sure. There were of course many, many doves everywhere! It was very hot,almost 100 degrees and the sun was very intense as usual.

This coyote shows little concern that it is being watched.

Evening Sky

We took a short ride into Tucson Mountain Park to do a little bird watching and to see if we could spot any four legged creatures.
It had rained a little earlier which never happens in June and it was still mostly cloudy.
The temperature was a bit on the cool side but for an easterner it felt great.

We saw three of these four legged friends stroll by. This one wanted to know what all the clicking was about.

The evening winds down.