Gallery Updates

On the advice from a fellow blogger, I organized my galleries to be subject specific.  There is a new gallery for Bryce Canyon National Park (I realize I need to post more photos of this beautiful place), Grand Canyon National Park, and of course, my beloved Zion National Park.  I also posted galleries for flowers and birds, with a gallery for Ancient Art, Arizona, and Other Animals in the works.

Enjoy the images! Remember, they are all available for purchase.  Contact me for details.

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Wild Weekly’s Photo Contest: Green

I’m participating in the online adventure travel and photography magazine LetsBeWild.com’s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggersThis week’s Challenge is: Green!

 

There is an old saying: Water is Life!  No where is that more applicable than in the desert.  A person can go without water only 72 hours, maybe less in the desert.  Especially when it’s hot and dry.  However, here in this canyon where I live, there is a Riparian Woodland Climate, there are also hanging gardens, swamps, and of course, desert.

Here in the desert, you will find Prickly Pear Cactus, which is a very hardy plant that you can eat and is very high in water.  In a survival situation, you can cut these up and use the center for a water source.

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Of course, if you want to get a good source of water, the best thing to do is find a spring like this one.

_RW_2723This is The Grotto in Zion National Park.  It’s also an excellent source for water.  You would still need a water purification system, because all water sources in North America are considered contaminated with bacteria and viruses.

Another great source for water is water falls, as seen here.

CRW_0031This is the world famous Menu Falls, in Zion National Park.  It’s called Menu Falls because it was featured on the menu at Zion Lodge during the 1950’s.  It’s also a great place for weddings (there is a wooden platform here so you can look at the waterfall).  A friend of mine was married here a few years ago (you know who you are!).

Moving into Pine Creek Canyon, there are wonderful spots to just simply relax, of course getting there you have to climb over boulders and walk in the water, which in some places are absolutely breathtaking and relaxing.

_RW_1452I could sit here for hours just listening to the water fall and watch the pollywogs in the water, (the little black dots on the right).

Along the way, you will find ferns and other water loving plants.  Water just seeps out of the sandstone and creates wonderful micro climates.

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Of course, it’s amazing where you can find ponds and streams, this pond is located at 11,000 feet at Cedar Breaks National Monument.

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Eventually, though, water does come from the sky in form of rain and snow.  Since the theme for this contest is Green, I’ll stick to rain.  This is from the West Rim Trail in Zion National Park looking south, one of my all time favorite hikes.  I was always told you don’t see Zion until you see it from the top.

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Of course, I do like to go camping in places other than Zion.  This is at Oak Grove Campground just above Silver Reef, Utah.

_RW_1579You can see the oak leaves on the left surrounded by Ponderosa Pine trees.  This was a wonderful sight to wake up to.

 

Of course water comes in all shapes and sizes and colors.  This was at a water sculpture in the Aria in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Without water, there can be no life, and therefore, no green at all.  Hope you enjoyed this post and even learned a little about the importance of water.

Kelly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wild Weekly’s Photo Contest: Flowers

I’m participating in the online adventure travel and photography magazine LetsBeWild.com’s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggersThis week’s Challenge is: Flowers!

I love flowers!  When wandering through the desert and mountains, I often look to see if there are any flowers because they’re just so beautiful!  Sometimes, it’s all I’ll photograph if I’ve been through the area frequently.

Here is my favorite flower photograph!  I was taking pictures of these desert flowers when a bee landed on the flower!  Great shot, but I ran afterwards!  (Bees and I don’t get along too well.)

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A rose by any other name, is still a rose.

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Sometimes it’s simply amazing to see a flower grow among the harsh rocks where it’s hard to grow anything.

_MG_0415I’m not exactly sure what kind of flower this is.  I found it in my front yard one evening after work.

This one I found wandering in the desert around Cedar Pocket, inside the Virgin River Gorge.

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Of course, living on the edge of the Colorado Plateau, there is an amazing variety of plants and flowers that grow here, from the amazing Prickly Pear Cactus and its gorgeous flowers that turn into a delightful fruit that is delicious and tart.

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In the higher plateaus, you will find alpine flowers mixed with desert flowers, such as this blue flower, I’m not sure if it’s a violet or not.

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Then there is the world famous Sego Lily, Utah’s State Flower.  It’s very simple, yet delightful.

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What’s even more amazing, is that here in the Mojave Desert, or is it the Colorado Plateau, or the Great Basin??  Well, guess what- it’s all three!  All these different geographic features meet right here in Zion National Park!  Cool, right?!  Anyway, right here in this area, we have the Narrows, and there you will find all kinds of aquatic plants.  My favorite is the Golden Columbine, which loves the hanging gardens, along with Monkey Flowers and Shooting Stars.  Here is the Columbine, with Shooting Stars in the background.

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Enjoy these flowers and please feel free to comment and visit the other contestants as well.

 

 

 

 

 

Spring’s first adventure

A couple of weeks ago, I went on my first major hike in quite a long time (two years, actually). I went with a couple of friends (you know who you are), and went bushwhacking across Little Creek Mesa looking for an adventure. Along the way, we came across a hole that was about six inches across and several feet deep. To see how deep, we dropped in a glowstick and it went down about 40 feet or so. It was cool!
There are many washes and small canyons there and sometimes it’s not that easy to navigate across.

There are many wild flowers and cacti in bloom, and for some inexplicable reason, I love taking photos of flowers in bloom. I guess it’s the newness of life that nature is putting on display that is absolutely gorgeous. Somewhere along the way, I found this cactus with the most beautiful small red flowers that is the claret cup cactus and I couldn’t pass that up, so I took a photo that I’m happy to show you. It is featured on my website

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