24. July 2014 · Comments Off on A Fine Walk · Categories: Places · Tags: , , , ,

Out in the humid air before sunset, I work my way down a little wash and stop to examine some arrestingly-scented flowers that I haven’t noticed before. A few steps down the wash I spot a snoozing coil-shaped anomaly in the sand. After a brief and quiet detour I move on another 9 miles or so, encountering javelina inspecting an old drum, a root fitting in, and a pollen-festooned beetle in a windblown Rock Hibiscus.

18. June 2008 · Comments Off on Where’s Waldo? A Rattlesnake Perception Test · Categories: Places · Tags:

Not sure that’s really his name, we didn’t connect. Just after 0500, sun not over the Rincons yet, crunching along the dark trail, watching the sun underlight a few clouds with orange and blue, the birds a bit hoarse with their first calls, and suddenly I made a sound like “eeeeeeeeeee” and started dancing backward. I was two steps from planting my left foot squarely on him.

After my pulse got down in the low 200’s I took the long way around and mentally marked the approach to that spot. I would be returning through here in an hour or so. Kept a more microscopic watch on where my feet were going for a while, did spot a couple of swishy marks across the trail and the end of a fast-moving black tail under a prickly pear, but no more Waldos.

On the way back I passed my marker stone, thinking that by now he would be woken and gone, but he was still there with eyes closed, wrapped in a comfy shipshape coil in the dust. The blipping and bleating of my digicam caused him to open an eye.

So now, with a lot more light than I had the first time, you too can spot Waldo. Here are five shots zoomed in steps from the same spot. You have the advantage of non-surprise and light. You can click any of the photos and use the arrows to move between larger versions. I’ve enhanced the contrast a bit to help out.