Deserts and Beyond

Deserts and beyond...places in and around the southern California deserts and beyond. Photo taken at Canyon Lake, in the Superstition Mountains of Arizona, December 2011. A few minutes later, after the sun disappeared, these cliffs were their normal color. They were only golden for a short time and I'm glad we were able to view them in their glory.






Monday, October 31, 2011

Yellow rose~Mellow Yellow Monday, Macro Monday~103111

I found this beautiful yellow rose in our local park yesterday morning.  The park was pretty much deserted except for the Occupy Coachella Valley protestors, who are sleeping in the parking lot.  The ducks were out and so were a few joggers and people walking their dogs.  It was peaceful and quiet and the sun was beginning to hit the rose garden.  Mellow Yellow Monday and Macro Monday for October 31, 2011. To visit MYM, please go to:  http://mellowyellowmonday.blogspot.com/ 
To visit Macro Monday, please go to:  http://lisaschaos.com/?s=macro+monday

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Park~Sunday stills Challenge~103011





This week's challenge was to walk 25 steps,pivot and take a photo in each direction,  walk another 25 steps, and do the same.  So, off I headed to the Palm Desert park, where the Occupy Coachella Valley movement was camped out.  It was early in the morning, about 8:00 a.m. and the park was quiet.  The ducks weren't, however, and were out demanding their morning breakfast!  The sprinklers were on and the roses were glistening...it was a beautiful morning!  Sunday Stills Challenge for October 30, 2011.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Desert sunrise~SkyWatch Friday~102811

We don't frequently get sunrises like this one and I'm glad I got up early one morning to see it while I was out doing my morning walk.  The rest of the mornings this week were really quite "ho hum", but this one was spectacular!  Who wouldn't get up for a sunrise like this? I noticed that I keep going out later and later and it is still dark.  By the time of the time change, I won't be able to see sunrises like this one out where I walk...it will be completely light.  I guess I better get out as long as I can!  SkyWatch Friday for October 28, 2011. To visit SkyWatch Friday, please go to:  http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Winter crops~Nature Notes~102711




I left home early a couple of days ago and I had time to drive out by the fields near my school to investigate what was planted there.  I believe this is broccoli.  At least, that's what the large growers plant this time of year.  I caught the fields just as they were watering them in the morning. Aren't the fields pretty?  I love morning light and I'm glad I was able to see them before my work day started.  Nature Notes for October 27, 2011.  To visit Nature Notes, please go to:  http://ramblingwoods.com/

Dried mud

Sunday morning I took a drive down my favorite dirt road up in the mountains and saw many spots like this.  This is where a bulldozer makes a drainage path for water coming off the mountain.  They had rain up there a couple of weeks ago, and since then these muddy areas have dried out, resulting in the dried mud.  Isn't it interesting?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Mountain color~Our World Tuesday~102411


I always drive through the small housing area of our local mountains each weekend, looking for fall colors, and Sunday I found this red vine, which I believe is a Virginia creeper.  Isn't it beautiful?  I see this all over the little community near Garner Valley, which is right off Highway 74.  Our World Tuesday for October 24, 2011. To visit OWT, please go to:  http://ourworldtuesdaymeme.blogspot.com/

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fall leaves~Mellow Yellow Monday~102411

I took a drive up through Garner Valley, which is near the top of the Santa Rosa mountains Saturday and Sunday, looking for some fall color.  I found these trees next to the entrance to one of the ranches in Garner Valley.  They put a scarecrow out front, too!  We don't get these beautiful colors down in the desert, so I enjoy my trips up to our local mountains.  They may be getting a thunderstorm this afternoon and if I see clouds after school, I'll take a run up there!  Mellow Yellow Monday for October 24, 2011.  To see MYM, please go to:  http://mellowyellowmonday.blogspot.com/

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Rock formations Joshua Tree National Park~Sunday Stills Challenge~102311





Joshua Tree has some of the most unique and beautiful rock formations I've ever seen, although the Alabama Hills is also spectacular.  It's just that JTree is an hour away!  Hubby and I go there several times a year, including this trip in August, right after a thunderstorm rolled through the valley and the higher elevations.  That's hubby taking a photograph of a lizard on the rock.  You can see how HUGE that rock is!  He's 6' and he looks tiny next to it!  Anyway, we always enjoy driving out to Joshua Tree National Park and each time, there is somewhere new to go to in the park.  We once went in February right after a snowstorm and the joshua trees were covered with snow, but that's another post.  Sunday Stills Challenge for October 23, 2011. To visit Sunday stills, please go to:  http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Thursday, October 20, 2011

White picket fences~Friday Fences~October 21, 2011



I LOVE white picket fences, but there aren't many around here in the desert.  I DID find these, however, up in our local mountains.  I drive up there every weekend to visit my horses.  I board them up in the mountains, out of the desert, and I enjoy the change of scenery, especially in the fall.  Friday Fences for October 21, 2011.  To visit Friday Fences, please go to:  http://lifeaccordingtojanandjer.blogspot.com/

Ducks at the park~Nature Notes~October 20, 2011




Our local park has its own flock of ducks who hang around it day in and out.  They're very spoiled and tame...lots of people feed them.  Unfortunately, they don't always feed them the right foods.  I've seen people feeding them Doritos and bread.  I read that ducks shouldn't be fed those foods as they have no nutritional value.  I didn't feed them as I didn't have any food...what DO you feed ducks?  Birdseed?  Duck food? Nature Notes for October 20, 2011.  To see Nature Notes, please go to:  http://ramblingwoods.com/

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Reflections in the park~Watery Wednesday~101911

Reflections in the Palm Desert civic center park last weekend.  No, the fisherman isn't real.  He's a statue!  He's been there now for over 20 years!  The ducks, however, ARE real!  Watery Wednesday for October 19, 2011. To visit Watery Wednesday, please go to:  http://waterywednesday.blogspot.com/

Scenes from morning walk



I took a LONG walk Saturday morning...for over an hour.  I have noticed that I can now walk a lot longer and further.  My endurance is increasing.  I didn't walk yesterday (I HATE Monday mornings...), but I'll head out today.  It is still HOT here in the desert, over 100 degrees, but today should be the last day of triple digit heat.  Then, temps will drop down into the 90's and we can turn off the air conditioner!  :-)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Bee, where are you?


Oops!  He disappeared!  These yellow roses are up at the horse ranch in our local mountains.  They survived the summer up there and are in full bloom.  Aren't they pretty?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Tall grasses at the park~Sunday Stills Challenge~101611

For some reason, I drove down to the Palm Desert Civic Center Park yesterday morning after my morning walk, which was very uneventful.  All I saw were a couple of huge jackrabbits.  No hawks.  No ravens.  No coyotes.  Anyway, the sun was hitting these tall grasses and the ducks were lined up in the shade, taking a morning nap.  It was a quiet morning.  Sunday Stills Challenge for October 16, 2011.  The challenge was to find something in the foreground.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Cooper's hawk




When I went for my walk yesterday morning, I arrived at my favorite parking place and was greeted by the "chee chee chee" of a hawk somewhere nearby.  I didn't have my camera with me.  I found a large Cooper's hawk who immediately spotted me and took off.  His mate was nearby and the two of them soared and flew through the palm trees.  By the time I finished my walk, they were back in one of the palms and I got a real good view of him.  Of course, by the time I grabbed my cell phone to take a picture, they flew off.  But, in going through my archives from August, I found I had some photos of one of them, so here they are!  One flew right over me while I was walking and I didn't hear a sound.  I wonder how their prey evades them?  We saw a whole family of them (mom and two youngsters) over in Arizona when we stayed up on the Mogollon Rim in August and they were VERY loud!  They awoke me every morning right at daybreak.  It was actually Mom calling to the youngsters.  They kept her very busy!  There are a lot of rabbits along this area where I walk and I'm sure these two feed on them....ducks and water birds are there, too, out on the water courses on the golf course.  And, there are enough trees for them to hide in!  I love walking there and I never know what I'm going to see, but sometimes I just don't want to lug around my camera!  I was taking it in the mornings and then bringing it to school with me, so I may just take my Nikon with me from now on.  These photos were taken with my new Canon 7D.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Scarecrows and fence~Friday's Fences~101411

Here in the desert, we don't see a lot of signs of fall.  But, up in our local mountains, the scarecrows are out and watching for signs of fall.  I went to a yard sale up in Garner Valley last Sunday and these two were on guard near the house where the sale was.  The aspen up there are just starting to get a few yellow leaves and I'll keep an eye on them.  I love autumn and I'm already anxious to get back up to the mountains this weekend.  Isn't this a pretty decoration?  Friday's Fences for October 14, 2011. To visit Friday's Fences, please go to:  http://lifeaccordingtojanandjer.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Clouds and sand dunes~Nature Notes~101311



I love to see clouds over our desert mountains.  We don't have clouds here that often.  This week is CLEAR and up in the 90's and 100's (again...sigh...), but last week, we had a couple of cloudy days and I headed out to school with my camera.  I drove by a street next to the freeway that has a bunch of dead tamarisk trees (which are a REAL PEST), but don't they look awesome against the sand dunes and clouds?  Some of these are on the border of the Coachella Valley Preserve, but I never see any birds or animals out there.  Lizards, perhaps, but certainly no birds or ducks.  Hmmmm....I'll have to investigate this further.  Nature Notes for October 13, 2011.

clouds

We are back in triple digit temps...sigh...it was so nice to have a few days of cool weather and clouds.  Clouds make such a difference here in the desert.  This weekend, with two days of high clouds, it was absolutely delightful!  Temps were in the 80's, not triple digits.  But, it will be 103 here today and then 104 for the next 2 days.  Ugh!  I'm so tired of 100+ days.  I want FALL to stay!  This was the view of my walking area one day last week.  Lately, it's just been clear and warm.  I'm not even going out this morning...too hot and no clouds.  Phooey!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Friday morning walk

I never know what I'm going to see on my morning walk, so I always take my camera with me.  This was the view Friday morning.  It was crisp and clear, except for a few clouds over our local mountains.  I didn't walk all weekend, but I did do chores up at the horse ranch.  I noticed that I only logged 1,092 steps, which is a vast difference from my usual 13,000 steps when I take my morning walk!  ACK!  I'm noticing that my stamina is increasing, due to my walking and I didn't huff or puff at all up at the horse ranch!  I was out and about all weekend and i know I was busy, but I wasn't walking.  I'll be out this morning, however, and every weekday morning.  I ordered a brand new pedometer from Amazon.com and I'm awaiting its arrival.  It will also tell me how many calories I've burned while walking.  The free one, I'm afraid, isn't as accurate as this new one that I'm buying myself.