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.


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.



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.




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.



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.



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.










Wild Weekly’s Photo Contest- Scary!!!

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


Let’s say you were hiking through the desert and you heard a noise beside you, something between a rattle and a noise maker from a new year’s party.  You look down, and your worst fear is realized.  You are face to face to a Diamond Back Rattlesnake!


What’s that you say?  What do you do?  DON’T PANIC! They are more afraid of you than you are of them.  If they feel threatened, they will strike.  Don’t run, but get out of there as quickly as possible.


These guys also instill panic to divers and other such sea faring folk:


Yes, this is the Lion Fish!  One of the worst fish to tangle with.  It carries a sting worse than an electric eel and is poisonous!  Just like another sea creature that flows with the current: The dreaded jellyfish.


Yes, this guy can do lots of damage so avoid them as well.


Sometimes, fear can be instilled with something less insidious as what’s been shown up to now.  Have you ever seen an insect that is large, scaly, has large antennae and scary looking?  I’m sure you have, but have you ever seen one of these?

_MG_0201This little guy was on the back of a chair at work.  No one had ever seen anything like it and to date, it’s yet to be identified.  Here’s the side view.

_MG_0204It is a nasty looking bug.  Anyone know what it is?  If you do, please let me know, I’m very interested.

A friend of mine had an iguana and I was lucky enough to capture it on film.

shelly17I love the lighting here, makes it look like something out of a horror flick.

Sometimes I get vertigo standing on the edge of a cliff, thankfully not very often, usually when I have zoomed in to what ever is below.  However, I have a friend that loves to sit on the edge of the cliff.

_RW_1743It’s beautiful here, in my beloved Zion National Park.  This was taken from Cable Mountain, which is about 2,200 feet above the valley floor.  This is what my friend was looking at.



If you look closely, you’ll see the famous Zion Park Shuttle stopped at the Weeping Rock Shuttle Stop.

Around 1900 to 1930, lumber from Ponderosa Pine was lowered on a cable to the valley floor below for building material, since cottonwood is not very good for building.  This was before the tunnel in Zion was completed in 1930, and it was a 100 mile trek on horse and buggy around through Arizona to get from East Zion to West Zion.