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Monday, July 31, 2023

Good Break

1st 5:  morning sky with clouds
Dr. K, Willow, Frio and I got a nice break this morning:  heavy clouds blocked the otherwise brutal desert sun and kept the temperature down; it was somewhat humid, but bearable.

We did our usual hike, taking a few breaks; one break included watering the Heelers.  The pups weren't eager to stop in the shade because there wasn't any.

I got some decent photos of a Ladder-backed Woodpecker, but I wish it had been a bit closer to us for better detail.  Everybody enjoyed our trek today.

Princess Yucca

Tortugas and the Organs

Barrel Cactus with surviving buds (i.e. not eaten)

This & next 4:  male Ladder-backed Woodpecker

Frio and Willow

Barrel Cactus with old fruit and new buds


Hill west of the right branch

Ocotillo on hill

Organ Mountains with a hint of Tortugas

White-winged Doves


Sunday, July 30, 2023

Sunday Sizzle

1st 2:  Cactus Wren
It was very hot this morning when the four of us began our daily hike; things didn't get any better during the rest of the trek.

Again the high wind present this afternoon failed to materialize early enough to benefit us.

After our outing we took a long drive, listening to Matt Jones and Myron Medcalf on their Sunday Morning show.

Seven birds

Prickly Pear fruit

This & next 3:  Curve-billed Thrasher

Frio and Willow on shade break (kind of)

Toppled Ocotillo has been growing for years like this


Saturday, July 29, 2023


Headed down LDR-A
It felt hot and humid when Dr. K, Willow, Frio and I set off on our morning hike.  Conditions were made worse by the lack of a breeze, but it's quite windy this afternoon.

We did our usual route, happy to see Swainsy the hawk sitting atop its favorite yucca 200+ yards to the east of us.  One photo below shows it taking off with other birds nearby; no dogfight between any of them, though.

As always we were glad when, at the end of our hike, we were able to seek shelter inside Whitey the CR-V for the short ride home.



Yucca stalk with fruit, ocotillo and Soaptree Yuccas

Yucca elata

Tortugas and the Organs

Soaptree Yucca with seed pods

This & next 3:  Swainson's Hawk

This & next:  the "O"s

Last 2:  views from the right branch arroyo


Friday, July 28, 2023

Frying Friday

How many birds?
It was hot this Friday morning when Dr. K, Willow, Frio and I hit the trail; nary a breeze to lessen the stifling conditions.

We did our regular route, spotting a few interesting critters along the way:  Swainson's Hawk, House Finches, a Desert Spiny Lizard.

We did our entire trek in this season of non-existent monsoon weather thinking only about how nice it would feel when we were back inside the waiting CR-V.

Swainson's Hawk on yucca

House Finch on yucca


A species of Tarantula Hawk (Hemipepsis Ustulata)

Tarantula Hawk on Allthorn

Frio and Willow

Dr. K with a different hat

This & next:  spot the Desert Spiny Lizard

The "O"s in the right branch arroyo


Bushwhack or Not to Bushwhack

1st 2:  this morning's moon Another morning doing our regular hike, this time with added distance; we bushwhacked out of the left branch...