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Saturday, October 16, 2021

Chillier Than Yesterday

Organ Mountains
We did the exact same hike we did yesterday, but the temperature was colder:  43F.  The saving grace turned out to be the absence of wind.  Nevertheless I felt comfortable in a long-sleeve shirt, long pants and a Nike warm-up jacket.  Never took the jacket off.

After our exploration of arroyos northeast of the Tellbrook Arroyo we headed up LDR back into the upper flatland and our waiting CR-V.  Made a detour on the way home in order to get gas at the Pic Quik on Telshor.

Willow and Frio were fairly well behaved on our morning trek, but they got awfully like bloodhounds on leashes when they picked up a scent on one part of the trail.  Their rabid need to forge ahead lessened significantly once we cleared the spot.

Long-dead yucca

Heelers and shadows

This & next:  same deadwood

Soaptree Yucca with dead family members

Barrel Cactus with fruit

Yucca and shadow


Friday, October 15, 2021

Abbreviated Cold Trek

Frio and Willow on LDR-A
Although it was the same temperature yesterday at the beginning of our trek conditions today were made worse by a brisk wind.  The wind chill must have been in the mid- to high-30s--chilly enough to make my hands cold.

We headed down LDR-A to the Tellbrook Arroyo, crossed it and immediately turned east on a small trail that runs parallel to the arroyo.  We then began our usual exploration of several different arroyos northeast of the Tellbrook.

The only time Willow and Frio got feisty during our outing was when they spotted a jackrabbit immediately ahead of us in an arroyo, and after it took off the pups wanted to pursue.  I had to restrain them with force for only about 30 seconds, but it takes quite a bit of might to hold them back when they want to chase.  For medium-sized Heelers they are plenty strong.

View from LDR-A

Heading east on a trail off the long dirt road

This & next:  wide sandy area

This & next:  same tree in B&W and color

Frio looking askance


This & next:  Barrel Cactus fruit

Weed with cotton-like puffs

Yuccas in the distance

Soaptree Yucca


Thursday, October 14, 2021

A New Area to Explore

Frio and Willow on LDR-A
Willow, Frio and I explored an entirely new (to us) arroyo this morning.  We found it by heading down LDR-A, turning east in the Tellbrook Arroyo and heading up the southern bank until we came to what I, at first, believed was a dirt road.  It turned out to be a many-branched wide arroyo that had its northern terminus at the Tellbrook.

We followed it up a steep slope nearly to the parking area at the corner of Tellbrook and Sonoma Ranch, but were forced to turn around due to heavy undergrowth near the arroyo's southern mouth.  The new territory certainly called out for further future explorations.

We saw nobody else while we were out there today, but somebody was shooting somewhere to the north of our position.  Willow displayed true merit while we retraced our way down the new arroyo, leading us back on the right route when I got confused about which branch to follow.  She seemed pleased with herself when I praised her path-finding ability.

A tad hazy

Hill west of the Organs

This & next:  same scene, different zoom

The hill I want to climb

Barrel Cactus far west of the Organs

Torrey Yuccas

This & next:  yuccas atop the hill I want to climb

Kokopeli says, "Kiss my butt"

Torrey Yucca



A section of new arroyo we explored

Osmond Family

Find the Cactus Wren

Cactus Wrens are the Heckle and Jeckle of the desert

Cutleaf Globeberrry vine on the side of the Soaptree Yucca

Cutleaf Globeberry

Heelers taking a break on LDR



Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Cold, Chilly and Cool

First 2:  upper flatland road views
It was downright cold when Willow, Frio and I set off this morning:  46F with a stiff breeze.  Because the sun was shining brightly, though, conditions began to feel better as we warmed up.  We got warmer because we did a long trek, exploring new sections of the Tellbrook Arroyo, and then completing a long loop that we've done before.

We saw no humans while we were out there today, but a jackrabbit streaking up one of the arroyos we explored captured the Heelers' attention and forced them to pull hard forward.  I had them well under control, though, and they relented quickly from the urge to surge ahead.

Our long hike had the good effect of providing all three of us with ample exercise, and by the time we reached the waiting CR-V we were well satisfied.

From LDR-A

This is the desert?

Inside the wide arroyo

Soaptree Yucca skirts and leaves

Heading up the arroyo we explored yesterday

Frio and Willow

This & next 3:  Tortugas and the Organs

Torrey Yucca

Last 2:  Organ Mountains


Chillier Than Yesterday

Organ Mountains We did the exact same hike we did yesterday, but the temperature was colder:  43F.  The saving grace turned out to be the ab...