Sunday, December 1, 2013

An Exciting Discovery at Twin Tanks

We drove out to Twin Tanks the other day and as we were loaping along with no real destination in mind, we saw these two quartz boulders in the distance and thought...'Let's go see what that's all about'. When we got there, there were huge quartz boulders strewn all about and lo' and behold, there was one of the famous 'Twin Tanks' down below. This is where the early cattlemen would build small dams to try and capture as much water as possible for their cattle during the year. There was still some water in the dam from the recent rains. We moved up the wash to see what else we could see and ran in to a dry waterfall that we saw off the trail. Upon closer inspection, we found these great petroglyphs. What a find. We meandered further up the wash, but nothing more was to be found that day. Twin Tanks is a great area to explore. It's easy hiking and there are many interesting rock formations, gullies and canyons to discover. You can easily spend the whole day out there just exploring to your heart's content


Quartz Boulders

Quartz View Point


Molten Forms

Monday, November 25, 2013

Fall Colors Arrive at Big Morongo Canyon Preserve

Big Morongo Canyon Preserve is the only place around here where we can get our 'Fall Colors' fix. It's such an amazing place, with a constant water source, a marsh area, little streams and open fields. Did I mention the birding? Yes, it's a great place not only to take a walk, but the birding is some of the best around. People from all over the country come to 'bird' here. Come on down some Wednesday or Saturday morning around 8 a.m. and you'll meet great people and see more birds than you ever would on your own.



Still Life

Green and Gold

Burnt Limbs

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Key's Ranch-Vintage

We got to take a special tour of the Key's Ranch the other day, sponsored by the Mojave Desert Land Trust and the Park Service, what a treat. If you've never done the tour, make a reservation for it the next time you're out here, you'll love it. Bill Keys and his family were the most successful homesteaders here at the time and lived on the ranch until 1972. While cruising around the property, I stumbled upon this old, out-of-date, roll of color film in a wood pile...

The House
The Willys

Fence of Branches
The Truck





Sunday, November 10, 2013

After The Summer Rains, 'The Flood Series'

We had quite a few Thunderstorms in August and early September this year, which I was hoping would lead to some nice winter rains... nothing so far... start your rain chant! So... the other day we took an early morning hike over at Barker Dam hoping to see some Bighorns, but no luck. While heading back to the car, we walked up a wash where you could see the effects of the summer rains, resulting in some beautiful patterns in the sand. I started snapping away and came away with some nice shots. You can see more on my website:


Friday, October 18, 2013

Hooray! Joshua Tree National Park is Open.

We're all very excited to be able to hike and bike and climb to our heart's content, especially now, because the weather is fantastic. Y'all come on down!

Barker Dam View

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Hiking the 955

Since we can't hike in Joshua Tree National Park, during the 'Shutdown', we had to find an alternative. Thank heaven for the Mojave Desert Land Trust, which saved a piece of land on Quail Mountain, known affectionately as the '955'... acres that is. They saved it from development, so the rest of us could hike there, nice folks. We got up early and hiked up to this one spot, where, if we've had enough rain during the winter, you can view a waterfall. Because of the good rains we had during the summer, there is plenty of Brittlebush, fields of small yellow flowers and lots of green buds, just waitin' for more rain. Here's some pics from the hike done in a  'moody' style.

Rocky View

Rock Pile




Yucca Ribbons

Friday, September 27, 2013

Barker Dam in Black and White

We went over to Barker Dam the other day. Went early... crack o' dawn... hope'n to see some of them elusive Big Horns. Everyone around these parts said they'd seen a bunch early in the morning, so we figured... what they heck...let's go! Well... long story short... no Bucks, no Big Horns, shucks! But got these pictures  of 'stuff' that was there. To me, real interestin' like. Next time.

Yes, Mother, there is water in the dam.

Floating Rock

Bill Keys added more height to the original dam

Stand off

Big Foot Joshua Tree

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Cloud Chasing

We've had quite a bit of rain this summer, which possibly, portends a good Spring. Keep your fingers crossed. So, we went out the other afternoon chasing clouds and came away with these three shots.

Speeding Clouds

Temple of The Clouds

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Amboy, A Place Like No Other

Drove through Amboy, California the other day, stopped for the usual 'rest stop', took a picture, chatted with the fella behind the counter, "Nice weather today... Uh huh... Where y'all headed?... Santa Fe... Uh huh...", bought a T-Shirt and headed on our way. Always a pleasure.

I gave it a little 'vintage glass negative found in the attic' treatment,

Sunday, June 23, 2013

A Gorgeous Morning Sky

I went in to the Park early the other morning and the first thing I saw was this! What a great beginning to the day.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Brooding Rock Formations in Hidden Valley

I keep returning to this one section of Hidden Valley in Joshua Tree National Park. The rock formations in this area fascinate me, the shapes and textures can be so other worldly.  I like getting there just as the Sun is rising and watching how the light falls on the different rock faces as the time passes. There is a little route I travel, around and through, back around and through again over the course of an hour or two, until the light begins to wash out. Then it's time to go home for breakfast.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Beautiful Valley View

The other morning, we got up 'crack o' dawn to go bikin' and on the way in, I caught this shot of the valley spread out before us. I almost didn't recognize the place, looked like something Albert Bierstadt would have painted. A great day for a ride.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Once In A Blue Moon

This is the first time our 'Century Plant' Agave has bloomed (and the last...). A special event for us and a beautiful, almost full moon, to boot!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Nice Clouds at Jumbo Rocks

We went out the other afternoon and took a little walk at Jumbo Rocks. As we started out, this is the view I saw, thought you might like it too.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Little Thunderstorm... A Lot of Clouds!

We got a little bit of a Thunderstorm the other day in the afternoon, just enough to wet the plants, but later in the day, there were some beautiful cloud displays just before Sunset. A nice finish to the day.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Spring Greenery Appears at the Big Morongo Preserve

After a harsh winter of barren, gnarled limbs, the trees at the Preserve have sprung to life practically over night. The Cottonwoods are exploding with lush, green color and the Marsh area is alive with the sound of birds singing and cackling away in conversation. I'm suddenly aware of a sweet, floral scent that charms my spirit as I walk along on a sunny morning. Ah Spring!