Monday, June 18, 2018

Bluff in Mid May.

  Long drive into the West.  First day to Santa Rosa to eat at the Comet Restaurant and buy a pie.  It's a long drive and the Blue Madonna Plate, plus a pie for the trip, is a nice reward.  Caution:  Whatever you order, they will probably screw it up.  Beef instead of chicken.  Peach instead of apple pie.  Its all good.  Everything is perfect.

  The next day through Alb to have breakfast with Kirk Gittings and Victoria, (and Vito), and then up  550 to Chaco, which Cindy had never seen.  I wanted to look at kivas.

Bonito doorways.

I need an I-shaped doorway.

My idea for kiva images was a bust, so no point in discussing it.  Probably need a ladder.  Or rougher kivas.  Or a different idea.

I did get to look at a lot of Kivas.

And Cindy got to tour Chaco.  All good.  We walked the Chetro Keytl site.  There is a great wall behind it, in the shade.  I didn't have my gear out of my Fuji 600T.  It's a very graphic wall.

A suspicious hole in the wall at Chetro Ketyl.

  Ravens were working a nest over the Park Headquarters.  Got out the spotting scope to take a look at the chicks and the first curious folks that wandered up contained a woman who worked with Condors at the San Diego Zoo!

The next day we forged on to a volcanic neck in SouthEast Utah.  I got a nice look at things.  Didn't have a wide enough lens for the shot I wanted out of the above scene.  Should have packed a Nikkor SW 90. That might have done it.  

Shot the first film of the trip.

I'm in there, somewhere.

Nice surprise.  

Scrambling around as the light slid by.

  Atlatl point from up in the caldera.  Odd place for it.  I was picking through bones under the Golden Eagle nest and there it was, haft sticking out of the dirt.  If only they told stories.  Beautifully thin and deadly out of a pinkish high-grade flint.  Impressive.

  Was climbing the mesa wall for a shadow shot when a sandstorm blew in.  We only had one dot of Verizon but I got a call in to Recapture lodge.  They could take us for a night early, so back to civilization we went.

The next morning we went to 17 Room Ruin on the San Juan.  I wanted to see this wall.

My overlay for putting some moons in it.

We had the ruin to ourselves.  It used to get massive visitation, but the foot bridge over the San Juan washed out.  Now much less.  It's taken a beating.  I just wanted to look at some shadows.

 Bees were buzzing.  The acoustics are so good you can talk in a normal voice and be heard at the far end of the ruin.  Hummingbirds make a heck of a racket.  They actually hum.

Had lunch in the shade afterwards.  Warm afternoons in Utah in mid-June.  Better the week before.

Up the slope picking my way through the rock shelves and boulders.  Something ate half a Gopher snake.  I got charged by a Black Widow when I disturbed one of her trip-wire web strands.  The charge was only about four inches but still an impressive thing.

 Since we were down that way, we returned to the Volcanic neck.  I found a MUCH easier way in.  Walked out to look at dikes.  Its like a mini-shiprock.  After walking out to the tip of the dike complex, I climbed all the way up to the mesa along the dike.  It's a bit sporty.

Looking North toward the tip of the dikes.

View from the corner intersection of dike and mesa.  Igneous and sedimentary intersection.  Once on top I headed East along the mesa rim to check sone viewpoints.

Bobcat carrying a snake.

  Was looking for this.  Might be prime on June 21 or thereabouts.  Shadow still swinging nearer to mesa.  I got my gear and reshot the boulder and light streak, then went up to shoot the shadow as it extended into the desert.  Back to Bluff and Recapture for dinner with some terrific folks from Wyoming.

Waving goodbye to the shadow...for a bit.

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