Sunday, December 13, 2015


Today just got away from me.    We woke to impossibly blue and cloudless skies.   So much better than yesterday morning....

 Today's second cup outside required our fleece vests, but it was glorious nonetheless.    The air was quite chilly, but the sun was nice and warm.  Birds, birds, birds.   I added a bird book and binoculars to my usual cup of tea and digestives and spent a long morning just watching the little birds coming and going.    Dave put a shallow pan of water under the seed feeder and  more inquisitive, thirsty friends joined our second cup.    We were busy juggling tea/coffee, digestives, book, binoculars and camera so not many photos were taken.    Second cup stretched til well after noon.    So nice to have no schedule.

Since we're leaving here in the morning we haven't refilled the seed or hummingbird feeders but the precocious pair of Gila woodpeckers managed to fill their bellies at both.     Where there's a will there's a way evidently.

I've identified three new to me birds....three to add to my life list.   Dave noticed a Loggerhead Shrike atop a nearby Saguaro, we've been visited by a very busy flock of little Lark Buntings, and two shy Black-throated Sparrows have been hopping about below the seed feeder.    In addition to these three, we have enjoyed watching Cactus Wren's, Purple Finches, White Crowned Sparrows, Crissal's Thrashers, and a gregarious pair of Gila Woodpeckers to name but a few.

We did get up off our outside chairs a couple times to take Lewis on a desert walk and to do a shortish (about a mile and a half) hike to a nice viewpoint in the peaks above the campground.

a quick duck under the wire fence and the desert is ours

view from Calloway Trail.   Beluga is the white speck to the left
of the lava stone mountain rising from the desert.

This doesn't look like a trail Dave.....

We set off on an "alternate" trail and did a bit of rock scrambling and tree ducking (I'll follow him anywhere.....) before picking up the clearly marked trail and enjoyed some pretty views along the way.

I send Dave on ahead to scout for the real trail

Our climb did not entail the use of chains, cables and catwalks like the 6 hour one that Pam and John chose.    I'm sure you're not surprised.

Sunset tonight was a non-event, the sky was completely clear and the sun dipped quietly below the horizon.

Last nights, however, was another spectacular one, preceded by a huge rainbow right over Beluga.

Tomorrow morning we're off to Catalina State Park for a week.    We have friends to visit there.


  1. Today certainly was much better than yesterday:) The perfect temperature for a hike. Good to see you exploring:)

  2. Isn't AZ the BEST for birding?!?!

  3. I love your description of your leisurely morning. And the birds! The Black-throated Sparrows are one of my favorite desert birds -- and the Cactus Wrens. :-)

  4. Sounds like a perfect day in a beautiful spot! Love that pic of the barrel with the boys in the background :-) Good to know there are paths for normal people to traverse there.....

  5. I would not mind sitting with you and have my cup of coffee and watched the birds. There will be more at Catalina SP.