|Looking west from the outer loop road|
Not long after retracing my steps to the ridge I'd been trekking along I spotted another desert denizen, a coy Coyote who was scoping me out. She was ambling down a hill toward the major arroyo that runs out of Tortugas Mountain's west face, and, for whatever reason, I decided to try following her. She wasn't moving very quickly, but I knew exactly what would happen: what happens every time I follow a Trickster. She led me down into a copious growth of Chihuahuan Desert riparian flora before disappearing completely. I climbed the hill on the opposite side of the arroyo thinking I might catch a final glimpse of the canid, but no such luck.
There were other outdoor enthusiasts on and about the mountain early this morning; in fact, I bumped into one just after exiting Whitey the CR-V, my buddy Raymond. He and I trekked partway up the mountain together, palavering all the way. I hadn't seen him in a long time. When I mentioned that to him, he said, "Since October." I had no idea it had been that long.
|Spotted this raptor (probably a Red-tailed Hawk) over 1/2 mile away|
|Desert between here and Tortugas Mountain (Organ Mountains beyond)|
|I knew this would happen if I tried sneaking up on that hawk|
|Last I saw of this raptor|
|Look who I spotted while bushwhacking|
|She turned tail and slowly walked away|
|Will he follow me?|
|That come-hither stare|
|I'm headed this way|
|Last I saw of her|
|Outer loop road heading south|
|This and the next: same Torrey Yucca (a big one)|
|Starting to bushwhack back|