Another gray day. It does seem like they are becoming common! I wish that the sun would shine! As we come down Cory Grade, just north of the Gunnison River, I'm watching for Virgin's Bower.
There is fresh snow on the crest. And it triggers a host of memories. I remember seeing the random pattern of the snow on the black rocks as it slowly melted.
How time flies! It seems like yesterday when I led a group on this flower walk. But it was really years ago.
I'm at home again, and I'm reliving my recent trip to the San Juan mountains. What a glorious trip it was! Flowers, flowers, flowers.
Our driver stops and we all gasp. What incredible beauty lies before us! Every color, every shape is here before us -- red tones of paintbrush, the purple hues of Colorado columbine, brilliant yellows of mountain sunflower, the unmistakable whites of bistort and globes flower.
What a delightful fragrance... and it's just as pretty as it is sweet! And as I gaze at this lovely Desert Sweet, I again realize that it only took 20 years to grow taller than I am.
And here is my plant, Curly Dock. It's an alien weed from Eurasia that has become naturalized throughout the North American continent except for the extreme northern regions of Canada.
The landscape looks poorly -- rather like the 'dobes! There were some birds at Hart's Basin.
What a lovely bunch of weeds! They line the roadways on my right. I pull off the road onto the widened gravel area and stop.
What's in a name? Very often, our identity. Imagine Cedaredge being Juniper-edge, or Cedar City being Juniper City. How about Cedar Avenue being Juniper Avenue?
I certainly enjoyed lunch with my friend, Barbara. And now I'm driving along Tongue Creek Road because there's so much less traffic here than on Highway 65 and I can look at the landscape. There's not much to see except for the Dobe' Daisies.
Gray again. Light gray sky, dark gray sky, and angry-looking gray clouds everywhere.
There's still plenty of snow on Grand Mesa and Craig Crest is still a brilliant white. How I long for summer!
It's still trying to snow ... I can't see Jeff's (our neighbor to the south) or Sharla's (our neighbor to the north). But yesterday I had a glimpse of the San Juan Mountains (at least there were angry clouds where I knew those mountains were!)
How grand! The sky is blue (yes, a few clouds are around but I'm ignoring them). The sky is bright! And Terri just told us that there are "thousands" of cranes at the Escalante area! And the sky is blue!
On leaving Delta, we took 1600 Road, then turned onto the Trap Club Road and followed it past the landfill. As we neared the junction with North Road, I began to carefully note the roadside vegetation.
Perhaps you will recall my column of Sept. 6 about cattails. Or perhaps you'll remember the photo below and that I mentioned that I hadn't seen a cattail like that. Well, now I've been more observant!
I'm driving up this familiar back road, named Hulteen Road, and again I wonder about that name. The adjacent fields lie fallow, the sunlight is bright after the recent days of storm and I can see snow on the Grand Mesa. Summer's over.
Our neighbor's flag droops upon its pole. The roadside grasses are unmoving. But the leaves on our cottonwoods do their fluttering dance in the invisible breeze.
Just past the Cory Store, Allen and I can look down on the fields along Tongue Creek. Big hay-rolls stand in the stubble fields contrasting with the gray-tan of the 'dobie badlands beyond.
The water at Hart's Basin has gone down, but slowly, and it was very high this year. So, surprisingly the upper bed of cattails is still in bloom!
My, but it's nice to be home again. I was writing about my shorebird trip to the state of Washington that included the varied thrush and the backyard chestnut-backed chickadee, the Caspian tern and the fantastic Harlequin duck. It was a marvelous time! Memories for a lifetime!
Well, I'm back home with a column that just won't wait! I was writing about my shorebird trip to the state of Washington, but the Century Plant at my friend's home in Cedaredge is in bloom -- spectacular!
There are, or were, three wasp nests along the front eaves of our home. Or rather, they were being built.
They're everywhere! Scattered through the unmown field, along the ditch bank, and all along the edge of the highways -- Mountain Puffballs! The dandelion seed heads are so very small in comparison, for these are about four inches in diameter, much larger than the flowers that preceded them.
Along this familiar stretch of road there were clumps of Jim Hill Mustard last week. And here they are, still in full bloom!
Yes. Five separate petals and lots of stamens: That fits the rose family. And most of the lovely blossoming fruit trees in our area fit that description, too. Luckily, our delightful blossoming trees have not been frostbitten. Yet.
It's that time again! Purple mustard is everywhere! I am tired of writing about weeds, but this one is too abundant to ignore.
We're sitting here looking at the Grand Mesa with its storm clouds and swirling winds. But our greening lawn and the pasture across the road are bright with sunlight.
Another gray day. I enjoy the view of the Grand Mesa from our dining room window but this morning the view is discouraging ... gray, gray, and more gray!
I am weary of winter and it's only the middle of January! I could see the Grand Mesa yesterday but this morning it's only a mass-mess of clouds.
The top of Grand Mesa has vanished -- again. I stepped out the back door a few minutes ago and that was far enough to know it is cold outside!
Over a year ago, I wrote a column on mistletoe. In my mind's eye, I was walking through an oak woodland in Wisconsin.
Today the sky is clear ... what a nice change! It's been gray day after day, but it isn't warmer.
As we come through our driveway, we note that the Mahonia berries have darkened from red to ruby-red. The orange Pyrancantha berries seem brighter ... or is it that the landscape has become darker ... more gray than tawny?
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