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Monday, October 31, 2016

Paso del Norte

Down the single-track
Shortened the hike a little this morning because I had to drive down to El Paso for an appointment with my eye doctor.  Freeway congestion down that way has gotten incredibly bad due to constant road construction.  We like the people at University Vision Centre a lot, but having to drive down I-10 to Paso del Norte has got Dr. K and I thinking seriously about finding a new eye doctor here in The City of the Crosses.
Lots of interesting grasses

Buckwheat

Making love or war?

Into the sun

All tapped out

Getting way ahead of the pack

Sandy break

A little west of Tortugas

Can't decide which way to grow

Fall color comes to the Unicorn Plant

Paperflower

The best explorer

Yucca flowers and guests

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Desert Rambling

Part of Las Cruces, New Mexico
Dr. K, Becca and I stayed on the near side of Tortugas this morning, exploring several different arroyos both close in and further away from the mountain.  We spent nearly two hours rambling around in the Chihuahuan Desert inspecting plants and insects on plants.  Afterward we stopped at McDonald's on the way home, picking up some Egg McMuffins (with American bacon) and a couple of small coffees.  We don't usually eat fast food, but we decided a brunch was in order after such a long hike.
Shades of Roswell

Centennial High School and the Doña Ana Mountains

The trail down

Becca spots a guy and his German Shepherd

Out of the upper foothills

Soaptree Yucca (left) and Ocotillo

Stand of Torrey Yuccas

Enormous Torrey Yucca west of the mountain

Multi-headed Torrey Yucca

Enjoying a break

Exploring a different arroyo west of Tortugas

Checking things out ahead of the pack

Large Ocotillos and small Soaptree Yuccas

Gigantic Ocotillo

Blackfoot Daisies

Stumbled across this rock (not literally) again today

Long view far west of Tortugas and the Organ Mountains

I keep thinking this is a type of buckwheat, but I can't prove it

Becca and I near a medium-size Torrey Yucca

Becca in the shadow of the yucca

Me and my pal Li'l Soapy Yucca

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Another Saturday Hike

Colorful weed
Long hike in the desert west of Tortugas Mountain with the Beckster this morning.  I always take more photos than I intend to on these excursions, but I was able to limit the number to 70 today.  Yesterday I took 110.  As I've said in the past the advent of digital media has made photography so much rewarding and less stressful than in the past.  Nevertheless, despite reduced cost and increased convenience, I always manage to go a bit overboard.  Fortunately Becca is a very patient dog.
Delicate form

Sparrows in an Ocotillo

Ballooning over the Mesilla Valley

Headed down to an arroyo--where else?

Dying yucca

Prickly Pear pad side view

Photobombed by sparrows in flight

Break!

That's actually a yucca in the distance (right), not a sprout

How tall is this Torrey Yucca?

This tall

Hedgehog Cactus

Colorful Ocotillo

Tasajillo bearing fruit

Another colorful Ocotillo

Soaptree Yucca flower stalk

Open Sesame

Trying to find the nectar

Aren't any of these things opened yet?

Some type of yucca beetle

Soaptree Yucca flower stalk

Stingleaf flower beyond its prime

Arroyo Nuevo

Different perspectives from a new hike As soon as Willow, Frio and I exited the CR-V at the trailhead this morning I realized we wouldn'...