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Balboa Park ~ San Diego

San Diego. California

Balboa Park

Back in the day there were a few prescient and philanthropic people in the growing community of San Diego.

Decisions and actions were made and taken that proved to be in San Diego community’s best interests in the long run.

Alonzo Horton comes to town in 1867 and San Diego as we know it begins.

Fourteen hundred acres of land set aside in 1868 by town father’s for a ‘City Park’.

Kate Sessions landscaped the park and the city over time in return for 32 acres of land to be used as her nursery.

The Panama Canal and the Railroad arrive in town in the form of increased trade and commerce.

1915-16 Panama-California Exposition, was San Diego’s first world’s fair.

San Diego’s second world’s fair, was the 1935-36 California Pacific International Exposition.

(When and where was the last World’s Fair? Will we ever experience another?)

San Diego has inherited and preserved history and historical buildings that were meant to be temporary as the result of World’s Fairs and foresight.

Balboa Park ~ Beautiful Place

San Diego ~ Expanded Image Gallery

14 Jan 2018

La Jolla

An Overcast Day’s Walk & Drive in La Jolla

A Sunday in La Jolla

(Do not appear the rube, pronounced La Hoya)

Never thinking that the LDS Temple grounds  and the Salk Institute grounds would be closed, gated and locked.

Another day, but this time.

The City of San Diego and the surrounding San Diego County are an exceptional area.

The Torrey Pines Gliderport

Take a Run At the Windy Cliffs of Torrey Pines

Wind Was Not Enough To Fly That Day But Folks Did Hang Out and Practice Latter Day Saints Church Temple

Through the Bars

“After the temple is formally dedicated, entrance is reserved for faithful members of the Church.”

Wildlife On the Coast Boulevard Walk To the Children’s Pool

Dog-Faced Harbor Seal

Homes Along La Jolla Farms Road

It Is All About the Landscaping & the Entryway

At Least From the Road

Think Route 1 Along the New Hampshire Coast

Only the Desert & the Pacific Ocean San Diego Image Gallery

9 Jan 2018

Anza-Borrego ~ Palm Canyon

Anza-Borrego State Park

California

“This park’s combo name, pairing the name of famed Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza, who crossed this desert in 1774, and the Spanish word for sheep (“borrego”)—referring to the region’s native bighorn sheep, this desert preserve—California’s largest state park—protects more than 600,000 acres/242,811 hectares of badlands, palm oases, slot canyons, and cactus-studded hills. A geology lesson in making, still being altered by erosion and flash floods, it’s a wild and remote place, with much of it accessed via primitive roads, or on foot. (Consider renting a 4WD with high clearance for best access.) But the payoff is stunning stillness and unforgettable beauty.”

http://www.visitcalifornia.com/attraction/borrego-palm-canyon

Peninsular Bighorn Sheep

Bighorn Sheep are an endangered species.

“Anza-Borrego is home to about 60 desert bighorn sheep, the largest mammal in the park. The bighorn sheep spend their lives in the remote terrain of the Peninsular Ranges, venturing down on to the slopes to feed and find water. Keen eyesight allows them to view large expanses of terrain, ever wary of predators, humans or perceived threats.”

“Both rams (males) and ewes (females) have horns their entire lives. Ram horns can be massive curls, while ewe horns are smaller and straighter, like sabres that they use to protect themselves and their lambs. Rams show off their horns to other males as a means of gaining dominance, and will often go head to head in ritualized combat.”

“Water is essential for lamb survival and the long-term health of bighorn populations.The State of California and the Park have ongoing projects, including the removal of tamarisk and other non-native plants, to improve water supplies for wildlife.”

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park – A Place For Discovery , 2018-2019 Edition

Palm Canyon Trail

“Anza-Borrego’s most famous hike leads to Borrego Palm Canyon, a watery haven fed by underground springs and shaded by California fan palms, the only palm that is native to California. It’s not a major hike round trip (3 miles/4.8 km total), but it feels like a trek from the desert to the tropics. Head off into a sandy wash twisting through a rocky canyon dotted with barrel cacti and ocotillo (look for hummingbirds flitting to the plant’s crimson flowers).”

“A little further along, you come upon lush willows and the sound of little waterfalls, until finally, rocks give way to deep pools of shade cast by the soaring, shaggy palms (their untrimmed fronds make them look a bit like Wookiee out of Star Wars). A series of severe rainstorms and flash floods in the last decade wiped out many of the oldest palms in this grove, but Palm Canyon is still the largest of the palm groves in Anza-Borrego. Over 80 species of migratory birds use Palm Canyon as a watering stop as they travel through the desert. Bighorn sheep like this spot, too.”

http://www.visitcalifornia.com/attraction/borrego-palm-canyon

6 Jan 2018

Mountain Empire ~ In the Hall of the Ibis King

Lake Morena County Park

The Mountain Empire Region of San Diego County, California

The highest and furthest east of a series of reservoirs watering the San Diego watershed.

Pretty, but lots of dried up lake bed, with the reservoir at maybe 20% capacity.

The far shallow end of the lake provided endless photographic pursuits, with late day light and an energetic and successful wading hunter.

The same stretch of shallows, the same time of day, the same Ibis.

A nice place with comfortable, competent and chill staff who manage and maintain a quality environment.

Lake Morena County Park

The Mountain Empire Region of San Diego County, California

Expanded Image Gallery Link

3 Jan 2018

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park

Expanded Image Gallery Link

2 Jan 2018

Joshua Tree National Park ~ Desert Queen Ranch

Joshua Tree National Park

Bill & Frances Keys’ Desert Queen Ranch

“From 1918 until 1963 Bill and Frances Keys were the leading – sometimes the only – citizens of the high desert valleys of Joshua Tree.

Bill was prospector, miner, mill operator, cattle rancher, road and dam builder, mining equipment salvager, and improviser;

whatever was needed to survive in this desert hideaway.

Frances Keys was gardener, housekeeper, mother of four children, doctor, nurse, teacher, and as innovative a survivor as her husband.

In 1943 a feuding neighbor, Worth Bagley, tried to ambush and kill Bill Keys, but Bill was the better shot and killed Bagley instead.

Keys was tried and sentenced to 10 years in San Quentin for manslaughter.

Erle Stanley Garner took up Keys’ case in his “Court of Last Resort” magazine articles.

Bill was paroled after 5 years in prison and finally pardoned on the basis of self defense.

Then 69 years old, Bill and Frances returned to the Desert Queen Ranch.”

Decker, Decker & Hazlett, Road Guide To Joshua Tree National Park, 1999

Bill & Frances Key’s Desert Queen Ranch

Joshua Tree National Park

Expanded Image Gallery Link

2 Jan 2018

Salt Creek ~ Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Salt Creek Interpretive Trail

Again the Pup Fish ~ Link To Ash Meadows NWR Post

Running Water In the Desert, Death Valley ~ Who Knew

Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety In Death Valley NP, Lots of Variety In the Gallery

Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads

Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Morning Light ~ Zabriskie Point ~ Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Zabriskie Point ~ Morning Light

This One Begs To For a Return Engagement

The Above Images Captured Before the Sun Crested the Eastern Peaks of the Funeral Mountains Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety In Death Valley NP, Lots of Variety In the Gallery

Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads

Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Ubehebe Crater ~ Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Ubehebe Crater

Little Ubehebe ~ Beware the Knife Edge Approach and the Unexpected Vertigo ~ Way Weird

Ubehebe Crater From the Rim Just After the Height of LandThe Trails Down and Back Up ~ Ubehebe Crater

We Took the Trail Around the Rim Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety In Death Valley NP, Lots of Variety In the Gallery

Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads

Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Artist’s Palette Drive ~ Death Valley NationalPark

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Artist’s Palette Drive

This Was a Challenge Between the Wind and Sand & Grit

That and An Overwhelming Number of Photo Opportunities

Will Need To Return and Often

From Artist’s Palette Road Shooting Back Towards Badwater Just Before the Wind and Wind Blown Sand & Grit Ruled the Day

Bajada Boulder In the Foreground

Smart Car In the Mid-Ground

Badwater Flats In the Background

Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety In Death Valley NP, Lots of Variety In the Gallery

Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads

Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Harmony Borax Works ~ Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Harmony Borax Works

Excellent Imagining, Researching, Staging & Presentation of the Original Harmony Borax OperationTake the Time, Make the Time To Go Hear A NPS Ranger Interpretive Presentation On the Harmony Borax WorksView From Above the Twenty Mule Team Wagons Looking East To the Funeral Mountains

Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety In Death Valley NP, Lots of Variety In the Gallery

Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads

Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Mustard Canyon ~ Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

December 2017

Mustard Canyon

Wind and Sand Storm Over Badwater Blowing From Mesquite Flats

View To the West Towards the Panamints As One Enters Mustard Canyon

View To the East, Funeral Mountains Upon Leaving Mustard Canyon.

The Mustard Color In the Foreground Almost Overwhelmingly Comprises All of Mustard Canyon and Gives Said Canyon Its Eponymous Name

Link To Death Valley National Park Expanded Image Galley

Lots of Variety Here ~ Patience While the Gallery Slide Show Loads ~ Enjoy

Thanks For Visiting ~ Commentary Always Appreciated

22 Dec 2017

Ash Meadows NWR

Ash Meadows NWR

It Is All About the Pupfish, Do You Remember the Brouhaha, and Rightly So, Over the Pupfish

Geologic Faults Forcing Fossil Water Up Into the Amargosa Valley Desert As Seeps and Springs Resulting In An Oasis In the Mojave Desert. Ancient Pupfish Living In Those Seeps and Springs

The Devil’s Hole Pupfish, the Ash Meadows Amargosa Pupfish, the Warm Springs Pupfish, and the Ash Meadows Speckled Dace Are All Endangered and All Inhabit Springs, Holes and Streams In Death Valley NP and Ash Meadows NWR.

Back In the Day, the Sixties, These Fish and Conservation Activists Championing Them, Brought Farming, Development and Ground Water Pumping In the Midst of the Mojave Desert In the Amargosa Valley To a Court Ordered Halt, Resulting In the Establishment of the Ash Meadows NWR.

It Is All About the Water, Fossil Water, and the Geology.

“Water is the key natural resource that makes Ash Meadows a unique ecosystem in the dry Mojave Desert. Where does it come from? Over 100 miles to the northeast water enters a vast underground aquifer system. This water, also known as fossil water, takes thousands of years to move through the ground. A geologic faultacts as an underground dam partially blocking the flow of water and forcing it to the surface into over 50 seeps and springs. Over 10,000 gallons per minute flow year round, most of which come from seven major springs.”

“Ash Meadows has the greatest concentration of endemic life in the United States and second greatest in all of North America.

At least 26  endemic species have adapted to live in and around the waters of Ash Meadows”

August 2016 US Fish and Wildlife Service Publication Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge

16 Dec 2017

Bosque del Apache NWR 12-2017 ~ Day 3 AM

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge

San Antonio, New Mexico

12-4 2017

Morning Shoot Day Three

Northern Shoveler

A Nod and Kudos to Jeff Parker and Mary O of Explore In Focus for once again going above and beyond.

Contact these folks for quality photography tours.

~ / ~ / ~

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2017

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del ApacheBosque del Apache NWR 2016

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bitter Lake NWR ~ Lesser Sandhill Cranes

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Aransas NWR ~ Whooping Cranes

12 Dec 2017

Bosque del Apache NWR 12-2017 ~ Day 2 PM

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge

San Antonio, New Mexico

12-3 2017

Afternoon/Evening Shoot Day Two

A Nod and Kudos to Jeff Parker and Mary O of Explore In Focus for once again going above and beyond.

Contact these folks for quality photography tours.

~ / ~ / ~

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2017

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del ApacheBosque del Apache NWR 2016

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bitter Lake NWR ~ Lesser Sandhill Cranes

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Aransas NWR ~ Whooping Cranes

12 Dec 2017

Bosque del Apache NWR 12-2017 ~ Day 2 AM

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge

San Antonio, New Mexico

12-3 2017

Morning Shoot Day Two

Morning Activity ~ Crane Pools

Morning Light On Sandhill Cranes Leaving the Roost To Feed Last of the Sandhill Cranes Leaving the Roost Gambel’s Quail Looking For Sky Grain 😉

A Nod and Kudos to Jeff Parker and Mary O of Explore In Focus for once again going above and beyond.

Contact these folks for quality photography tours.

~ / ~ / ~

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2017

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del ApacheBosque del Apache NWR 2016

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bitter Lake NWR ~ Lesser Sandhill Cranes

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Aransas NWR ~ Whooping Cranes

11 Dec 2017

Bosque del Apache NWR 12-2017 ~ Day 1

Bosque del Apache NWR

12-2 2017

A Special Place, A Special PresenceNew Equipment Learning Curve

In the End Resulting In Some Nice Flight Sequences & Flight Captures Long Tall Drink of Water Morning Light Before Morning Light Gambel’s Quail ~ Male & Female

A Nod and Kudos to Jeff Parker and Mary O of Explore In Focus for once again going above and beyond.

Contact these folks for quality photography tours.

~ / ~ / ~

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2017

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del ApacheBosque del Apache NWR 2016

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bitter Lake NWR ~ Lesser Sandhill Cranes

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Aransas NWR ~ Whooping Cranes

11 Dec 2017

Bosque del Apache NWR 12-2017 ~ Day 1 / Blind

Bosque del Apache NWR

12-3 2017

A Special Place, A Special Presence

 Images from a two-person blind at the Bosque Bird Watchers RV Park just outside of the Refuge.

European Starlings ~ Non-Native Invasive Species

Blame It On Shakespeare Scrub Jay Ground Squirrel Gambel’s Quail ~ Female Gambel’s Quail ~ Male Whoops ~ Red-Winged Blackbird, Female ~ Who Knew (Jeff Parker)

A Nod and Kudos to Jeff Parker and Mary O of Explore In Focus for once again going above and beyond.

Contact these folks for quality photography tours.

~ / ~ / ~

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2017

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR 2016

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bosque del Apache NWR

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Bitter Lake NWR ~ Lesser Sandhill Cranes

Expanded Image Gallery ~ Aransas NWR ~ Whooping Cranes

11 Dec 2017

la Mesilla, New Mexico

la Mesilla, New Mexico

Grab shots after lunch at Andeles Dog House in Mesilla, New Mexico.

Lucky finds all around.

Basilica de San Albino on the Plaza Classy Antique Truck on the Grounds of St Clair Winery & Bistro Sweet

28 Nov 2017

White Sands National Monument

White Sands National Monument

Thank You to Herbert Hoover and the Antiquities Act

Gotta Go Out of One’s Way To Get Here

Tough Place to Capture Images

I Will Forever View Images of White Sands National Monument With Awe and Humility

Tons of Recent Visitation

Had to Walk Forever to Find Fresh Untrammeled Sand

28 Nov 2017