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North America » United States » Arizona » Mesa May 3rd 2022

During my time as a full-time RVer, 2010 – 2020 (during which time, I spent at least one week in all fifty states), I generally spent the seven days of the week with three days for “housekeeping” (laundry, oil changes, grocery shopping, selecting and captioning photos and writing the narrative for the blog), three days for tourism and one day for relocation to a new RV park. Given that 2022 will find every tour day filled with tourism and every non-tour day filled with “coffee on the plaza with the locals,” don’t expect much original narrative during the 2022 trip. My plan is to give my audience a daily, captioned, pictorial essay accompanied by the narrative of the day’s activities as supplied by the tour provider. Some tour operators have tendered interesting, meaningful descriptions whereas others ... read more
Cappuccino's, Marrakech, Morocco
Hotel Imilchil,Marrakech, Morocco
Cappuccino's, Marrakech, Morocco

North America » United States » Arizona April 16th 2022

As usual we were up and out reasonably early, knowing that we had to do laundry and pack up later today. There was a complete paucity of birds on the South Fork hiking trail we had done already twice with good results. Our Advent church choir has done an anthem in the past about Holy Week – “And no bird sang.” It seemed true today. The weather was hotter than before too, although the slight breeze made it pleasant. After about 2 hours on the South Fork Trail we visited another area that supposed had Red-faced warblers, which we had seen fleetingly before but didn’t photograph. Nice campgrounds and waterfall and lots of yellow-rumped warblers but that’s it. Visited both feeding stations in Portal, and did get a better photo of a Calliope hummingbird – recognizable ... read more
2 Community of Star gazers typical house
3 Community - I think I need two observatories!
4 Canyon views South Fork Trail

North America » United States » Arizona April 15th 2022

Good Friday of course, and at the end of the day of birding we were sure to be back at the house at 4 pm, which was 7 pm in Ohio, so we could watch the Good Friday service at Advent. There simply aren’t any churches around here. It was better than nothing, but still sad to be away from our church family. We left here earlier than ever, out by 7:20, to head up to the top of the big hill again in search of particular birds that like that altitude (about 8000' compared to Portal at 4700’). Funnily enough we didn’t see ANY of them, but ran into someone we’ve seen just about everywhere, who was scoping out a camping site. These people are HARDY! Camping might even be free up there, but most ... read more
2 almost at top
3 the road to Barfoot
4 at the top

North America » United States » Arizona April 14th 2022

It was a perfect day weatherwise – warmer than yesterday but still only about 38 when we set out on the hike – it was so sunny and no wind, so I started in my vest and wind-coat, gloves and knitted hat, but I soon stripped down to just the vest (and long sleeves and warm yoga pants and boots of course). We just repeated the South Fork canyon walk with its 5 stream crossings to get to the “bath tub” deeper pool, and then 2 more after that before turning back. We went further than yesterday but took just about as long – we are birders after all, not hikers! After the hike we stopped at the Research center to watch the humming birds again, and to check out their souvenirs (not much). We stopped ... read more
Beautiful large Dragonfly
Beginnig of the South Fork Trail. 7.45am and 38 degrees!
Black-chinned Hummingbird

North America » United States » Arizona April 13th 2022

A long day driving new roads over hills and dales. We decided to take advantage of the Chiricahua National Monument, supposedly 1-1/2 hours away. Ha! It was only 20 miles over the Pinery Canyon pass road, but much of it was like a washboard, and some even washed away, with trickles of the creeks running over the road. Only one car passed us going up to Rustler’s Campground, where we stopped to do a little birding at a higher elevation. It was FREEZING up there, so windy and about 47 degrees. Good thing we had our New Zealand windbreakers on. And what did we find at the campground? Besides not one camper. Robins! On the way down we did meet a walking party of 5 with a birding guide and we captured a photo of the ... read more
2 lovely views when high
3 White tailed deer
4 Can you believe

North America » United States » Arizona April 13th 2022

Boy it was cold this morning – we awoke to about 37 degrees!! So I begged off on the early-morning hike. We got to one of the “in town” bird feeding stations at Dave Jaspers at 8:15. There are a number of “public” bird feeder stations around Portal – in fact they are marked on the map that everyone hands out. Donation boxes sit out, and we see many people popping $1 in them “for the bird feed,” and indeed they probably spend that much, filling the sugar water, sunflower seeds, finch flax, corn, etc 2-3 times a day. Often someone from the house will come out and sit, and point out birds too, which is extra fun. We saw 2 NEW hummers today: the Lucifer (he didn’t look that evil, but is the only humming ... read more
BLACK-CHINNED HUMMINGBIRD
BROADBILLED HUMMINGBIRD 1
BROADBILLED HUMMINGBIRD

North America » United States » Arizona April 11th 2022

Wow, the hours are flying by, like the very strong winds that continue in this area. We were up with the birds as usual and soon after breakfast were sitting outside in the back watching the birds eat their breakfasts too. It was very chilly but we also “walked the perimeter.” We did see another javelina. Evidently the big male we saw yesterday has a bad back leg, which David noticed, so his name is “Gimpy.” And 2 more outside the property. And a handful of mule-deer - they are large! We drove into Portal, which has a post office and library and general store/restaurant but isn’t actually incorporated. We wandered around the town (1 block?) and stopped at some feeders. It seems quite common for residents to set up feeding stations, put out benches and ... read more
1 2 Main room
1 3 main room
1 4 bedroom

North America » United States » Arizona April 10th 2022

Palm Sunday - And check out day. (this should have been sent last night but there seems to have been a glitch. Let's try again - although Monday's adventures awai!) We were up and at’em long before 8 am, sad to leave our lovely little house. We had selected a church to worship in, a nondenominational church called Pantano Christian. The usual band and 3 songs (again, ones we didn’t know), communion, and a very good message. As is also usual in such a large church (much bigger than last weeks – in fact, they had 2 side rooms that could either be flat (like set up with round tables and serving breakfast before and between services!) or filled with bleacher seating but with padded proper chairs – as is usual, no one welcomed us, just ... read more
Broad-tailed Hummer
Bullocks Oriole
Canyon Towhee

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson April 9th 2022

Today was another incredible hot bright sunny blue sky sort of day. We drove to the East half of the Saguaro National Park, again getting there before it opened. It was CROWDED with bike-riders! Guess they try to get it in before the heat of the day. We did a 1 miles hike out to a lime kiln ruin and a mile back, and saw just one black-throated sparrow and 2 small unidentified birds, possibly gray vireos. All in all we preferred the other half of the National park. We are very grateful for our senior's free pass to the parks too. The mountains nearby were pretty, and the saguaro cactus varied. We learned to recognize a few types, including the “fish hook” cactus. We shall have to research if the Native Americans used the thorns ... read more
Cactus Wren nest
Cinnamon Teal
even rabbits are dry here

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson April 8th 2022

We had had a tip from a couple yesterday to go to the Madera Canyon area, especially because there was a feeder area. It was about 50 minutes away, and we discovered some interesting things and not just birds: there was strip-mining south of Tucson – huge squared off “tubs” of water – that was copper mining. AZ is evidently the source of most of the US’s copper. And then we wondered why US Rt 19 was marking everything in KILOMETERS instead of miles???? Because the road was built right after Congress approved a bill to switch over from miles to metrics, in like 1974. When it never really “caught on,” and we kept the funny old English system, the locals loved it and fought to keep the signs. Evidently there’s a stretch of road near ... read more
1 Acorn Woodpecker Male
1 Annas Hummingbird
1 Arizona woodpecker




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