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Sunday Hike – Geronimo-Turkey-West Webber (Mogollon Rim)

Dave and Heather joined Marilyn and me for a hike up and down the Mogollon Rim. Starting from the Geronimo Trailhead, we hiked Geronimo to the Turkey Trail, which took us to Milk Ranch Point, a Mogollon Rim peninsula. Atop the rim, we hiked FS 218 and then headed back down via the West Webber Trail. We returned to the trailhead via the Geronimo Trail.

We crossed this small creek at the start:

A view from the Geronimo Trail:

Heather and Marilyn, hiking up the Turkey Trail:

A view from the Turkey Trail:

Dave took this photo of Heather, me, and Marilyn:

(Photo Credit: Dave Sesteli)

There were some expansive views from the Turkey Trail. We decided to go up this trail instead of West Webber because I had read that West Webber was shadier – I wanted the shade during the warmer parts of the day.

A view from the West Webber Trail. West Webber was mostly in forest. This was probably the most expansive view available from that trail.

Marilyn and I crossed this “bridge” on our way back. Dave and Heather had hiked ahead of us and most likely took the left fork while descending the West Webber Trail. I enjoyed this stretch of trail – there was just enough growth to make me look twice in a few spots to see where to go next.

We saw this mushroom on the Geronimo Trail not long before arriving back at the trailhead.

Sunday Hike – Vineyard Trail

Marie, Marilyn, and I hiked the Vineyard Trail starting from the bridge near Roosevelt Dam.

Rappel Practice

Friday Fitness Hike

Bob, Mike, and I hiked a 9.1 mile loop: Pemberton, Lariat, Granite, Stoneman Wash, and back on Pemberton.

Prior to the hike, I noticed this Wolfberry bush. The berries are starting to dry out.

Look for the hare/jackrabbit at the bottom right…

A raven:

Look for the raven nest and raven’s head in the near saguaro:

A view from Stoneman Wash:

The car in Stoneman Wash:

Tuesday Night Sunset

I got this photo of Tuesday evening’s sunset from the Scenic Trail:

Server Build

These are photos of a new file server I’m building:





Friday Fitness Hike

Bill, Bob, Linda, and I hiked a 9.2 mile loop starting from the Trailhead Staging Area.

Early morning views from the Shallmo Wash Trail…


Views from the Tech Loop…





This is where the Tech Loop goes under the Sport Loop.


A saguaro in Stoneman Wash:


Cholla on the Granite Trail:


A Snowy Day in February (of 2013)

I’m revisiting photos that gave me trouble in the past. I used tone mapping in my original attempt and also failed to correct the blue cast.


Another edit – I used different techniques for this one.  In the one above, I used ALCE to add contrast. In the one below, I removed the lens profile corrections, skipped channel blending, but used luminosity masked curves early on to improve contrast. For the edit below, I used some mild settings in Topaz Adjust to enhance localized contrast. I also burned the bottom and corners and decreased the saturation of those areas too.


Figueras & Tossa del Mar

Everything about the Dali museum is surealism magnified.  Wild stuff, but interesting.

This, however, was not what I would expect to be a work of Dali.   He had very traditional painting skills that you never see elsewhere.


Karla and Bonnie told me, “You HAVE to see the Mae West room.”  It was hard to get a good photograph of this because people are lined up to march along the edges of the room before they climb the staircase to see “Mae West”.  And she really IS there…as you look through a blond wig, you see the lips, nose, and eyes/pictures below depicting Mae West’s face.

Only a surrealist would make you stare through a lens between camel legs to see “Mae West’.

Dali must have intended this as a spin-off of the fresco ceiling murals so common throughout Europe.

This is one of the few Dali pieces I was familiar with before coming to the museum–I like the flow of it.

This is Dali’s homage to Velasquez’s  famous “Las Meninas” portrait in the Prado Museum in Madrid. Dali painting the portrait of his Russian wife, Olga, with his own reflection in the painting.

These are photos of Elena, our guide with Educational Tours, on the beach at Tossa del Mar. She is a dynamic person!

From Figueras, we drove for an afternoon at Tossa del Mar, a tiny seaside resort town on the “Costa Brava” south of Barcelona.  You have to drive down a narrow, winding road down a cliff to get there.  Tucked along those cliffs is this little jewel of a town.  Kids enjoyed some beach time here.

A look out tower above the beach area of Tossa del Mar.

Cafes and hotels along the beach at Tossa del Mar.

I would never have guessed it, but this is a statue of Ava Gardner on the hillside fortress area above Tossa del Mar.  Yes, that Ava Gardner….the Hollywood movie star of the ’40’s and ’50’s…one of Frank Sinatra’s “ex’s”.   Apparently, when Hollywood discovered that this was a great filming location, Ava Gardner stayed in Tossa del Mar and brought a great deal of tourism to the town.   And this is their way of saying thanks for the economic prosperity she fostered by promoting their town.

If you stroll up the hill from the beach, you find a beautiful path winding around the lookout towers down to more cliffs along the edge of Tossa del Mar.

Amazingly, a cruise ship coasted right up to the beach to take on passengers.

The remains of a chapel near the towers.

A small island just off shore. High winds and crashing waves that day/

The road we drove down to get here were also along cliffs like these.


Marie enjoyed the views of crashing waves more than the beach.


View of Tossa del Mar from the hillside.

These towers were sad to be used to guard against pirates sailing in from….where?  France?  Italy?  Not sure, but kids like this area.


Lobby of the Palau de la Musica Catalana

Marie and I decided to book a tour with a separate group to see the interior of the Orfeo Catala, based on photos I had seen in a book about Barcelona.  Will be interested to see if Mara attended any performances here during her family’s visit to Barcelona.  This place was well worth the time.

Here is the stage.  Fabulously ornate.  Sculpture on the left is a tribute to a local choral director and the one on the right is a tribute to Wagner.

The Muses on the back wall of the stage are intended to spring forth from the mosaics on the wall.  Loved the graceful figures and musical themes.

The glass dome above the theater is very “modernista”.


Wider view of the dome and ceiling as you look up from the seats in the theater.

Upper side balconies in the theater.

Statue featuring Catalan choral director.

Wagnerian statues.

I imagine these are areas to stroll during intermissions.  You can see the exterior mosaic columns on the balconies outside.

You can only enjoy this if you pay for a performance or take the tour–tours are offered in Spanish, English, German, and French.

Side view of the glass mosaic dome over the theater.

Wide view of the theater.


They did play a short organ piece to show off the great acoustics of the theater.  I really regret not having time to attend a concert, because the acoustics were wonderful.  Notice that the workmen are setting up a smaller wooden platform for a flamenco performance scheduled for that evening.

Parc de la Ciutadella–our meeting place at the end of our last day in Barcelona.


A man was blowing bubbles in the park, to the great delight of crowds of children.

Our “Last Supper” as Elena called it, was arranged at a restaurant called Tapa Tapa on the beach.  Segway tours were available in many cities in Spain.

Everyone enjoyed the sand sculptors along the beach in Barcelona.  Notice he has casks with “blanco”, “tinto”, “rosado” for wine.

Group dinner at Tapas Tapas near the beach.

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