Tuesday, December 7, 2021

December 2-7, 2031 Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Arizona

 Mid 80's and sunny. It is so delightful in the shade we have not been motivated to go anywhere. Just hanging out and relaxing.  It is so quiet, dark and beautiful just sitting in the lawn chair and enjoying. 

Sunset last night from our picnic table. A cactus wren hanging around our campsite.

Sunset tonight.  I have finished these 5 baskets since we have been here.

Sunset tonight. 

The bus with Twin Peaks behind us at sunset.  John in a palo verde tree grove reading an interpretive sign on the Desert View Trail. 

View from the Desert View trail of the campground. The arrows point to the bus that is lit up by the sunset. The other structures are bathrooms and sun shelters. The campground is practically empty. View the other direction of the mountains in Mexico. 

John on the trail. Organ Pipe cactus's in front of a view of the mountains in Mexico.

Hedgehog cactus and a cute sign of social distancing activities with desert animals. I love the tarantula lifting weights and the saguaro listening to music. The new crescent moon in the sunset. 

77 today and sunny. The crescent moon, Venus and sunset in the organ pipe cactus in our campsite. John cooking lime garlic shrimp for dinner on the partner stove outside. Yum yum.

I spent the entire afternoon sorting through a bag of glass puddles I made before I left and trying to match up some earrings. It is big task since none of them are the same. I got part of them glued. 75, partly cloudy and light winds. We hiked 3 miles round trip to the visitors center this afternoon. A sign across the street from the visitors center that say first amendment designated free speech area. It is designated area for people to protest about the wall just south of here on the border. Inside the visitors center is this cute social distancing sign. It says 6 feet is the length of 5 gila monsters. 

In the top of the photo is a cactus wren, below is a cactus wren nest in a cholla cactus. Any predator would have to get in through the cholla, which has detachable joints with fish hook spines. If you touch it, it sticks to you and it really hurts. When you try to remove it, it sticks to your hand. It is comical in a 3 stooges way trying to get if off. I carry a comb in pack for that very purpose. The nest itself has thorny branches on the outside. The waxing crescent moon  in sunset caught on an arm of a saguaro. The faint star to the right is Saturn. 

John on the ground capturing the moon in an organ pipe cactus. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

November 29 to December 1, 2021 Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Arizona

 83, sunny and absolutely gorgeous. 

When we packed up to leave this am John noticed that one of the tires was low. So off to the Purcell tire  to get it fixed. It was the inside tire of the duals so they had to take both off. It was a loose valve stem, so they replaced it and off we went. We passed at the border patrol station, didn't have to stop, they were only checking vehicles coming from the other way. 

Every time we go through Why, AZ I take these photos. Missed the one of the Why not travel store. We are now in Organ Pipe Cactus Natl Monument. It is lovely. 

We scored one of the sites with a shade shelter, plus a huge organ pipe cactus to shade our site. But not the solar panels. No hook ups here, so will be using the solar. The campground has very few people in it. This is the first time this year that we are in an actual camp spot with picnic table and yard. It is very quiet and dark too.  I finished this beauty on the drive. It is 5 1/2 x 2  inches and is made from natural and dyed pine needles, polyester thread and glass beads. The center is a piece of dichroic glass I fused. It has dragon flies on it and depending on the light it is either silver, purple or green. 

Cactus covered  hillside just north of the campground. We had dinner outside at our picnic table tonight at sunset. 

The Twin Peaks that the campground is named after with last light. No clouds, just an orange glow at sunset. 

84, sunny and a light breeze. It was a delightful day in the lawn chair. Backlit cactus on our afternoon stroll. John strolling on the campground perimeter trail. 

Ajo Peak in the late afternoon light. Backlit cholla. 

Sunset from the campground.

Cool wind clouds this afternoon.

Last light on an organ pipe cactus. Sunset.

More nice clouds and organ pipe cactus. 

Sunset behind a saguaro cactus. 

Saturday, November 27, 2021

November 24-27, 2021 Tucson, Arizona

 71 and mostly sunny!

John fighting with the turkey breast he is smoking tomorrow for our T-day dinner. Sunset tonight. 

Been working on this basket. It has a lizard in the middle. I decided to make a bead lizard on the rim of the basket, but it looks more like a toad. Will have to work on it more. Sunset tonight. 

More sunset. John was going to smoke a turkey breast for Thanksgiving, but his smoker had a melt down and the bird went in the oven. It was all very good. Today was 70 and sunny, Very windy. Some cool clouds this afternoon.

Sunset tonight. 

We had the bus washed and waxed this morning. It is so nice and shiny now, Miles and miles of pecan orchards south of Tucson. 

We went to Madera Canyon and hiked to the Carry Nation Mine. Madera Canyon is a sky island. Mt Wrightson is 9.453 feet high. It is very wooded. 

Fall oak leaves on the stream. Alligator juniper bark, backlit grasses, thistle flower, fall leaves in the stream, white sycamore tree. 

Some old mining equipment at the Carry Nation mine. The mine itself hit water and has a stream coming out of it. 

View above the mine. John crossing the grass at the mouth of the mine. 

More alligator juniper bark, a small fern, a heart shaped knothole, gray squirrel with a bushy tail begging for food, white flower. We are just south of Tucson. It is amazingly green and wooded, for the middle of the desert.

Mt Wrightson and the Santa Rita mountains in Madera Canyon. Mt Wrightson is 9,453 feet tall.