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Month: March 2014 (page 2 of 3)


Marilyn, Marie, and I visited Tombstone earlier this week.  After lunching at the OK Cafe, we visited Doc Holiday’s Gunfight Palace where several historic gunfights were reenacted. I took these photos during the performance.

20140310-_DSC6857-medium 20140310-_DSC6864-medium 20140310-_DSC6916-medium 20140310-_DSC6936-mediumMarilyn took this photo from that performance:


The Tombstone Courthouse, which is now a museum.  I think it was worth the $5 per person entry fee.


The Tombstone Epitaph, which also seems to be a museum:

20140310-_DSC6997-Edit-mediumMarilyn took this photo of a tourist ride in the form of a mail wagon.  Note the signs for the OK Corral in this photo.


These photos are from Boot Hill, seemingly one of the few places in town at which admittance is free.

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Friday Hike – Ballantine Cabin & Corral

Nancy, Bob, Janet, Allen, Savannah, and I did the Ballantine Cabin & Corral hike on Friday. When we were done, my GPS showed a distance of eleven miles with over 2300 feet of total ascent.

For many of my hikes, I simply use the GPS as a trip computer, however, for this one, we used it to find our way for several miles of the hike.  If you do this hike, I recommend using one of the GPS tracks for this hike as it is easy to miss a turn past Ballantine Cabin.

We started just after 7:00am; we got to see the sun rise as we drove to the trailhead.  This was one of the views as we hiked up the Pine Creek Loop.20140307-_DSC6181-Edit-medium Another view from the Pine Creek Loop.  We went up the steep way so that we’d have an easier descent on the way back.

20140307-_DSC6208-Edit-mediumAnother view from the Pine Creek Loop.

20140307-_DSC6214-Edit-medium The Pine Creek Loop is about 2.5 miles long.  The Ballantine Trail intersects the Pine Creek Loop halfway around the loop.  We took the Ballantine Trail out toward Boulder Flat.

20140307-_DSC6226-Edit-mediumMore areas of sun and shade.

20140307-_DSC6229-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6232-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6274-Edit-mediumOne of many interesting rock formations along the hike:

20140307-_DSC6292-Edit-medium This rock formation can be seen at the 2.5 mile point in the hike.

20140307-_DSC6325-Edit-medium Nancy, Savannah, Allen, Janet, and Bob:

20140307-_DSC6364-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6367-Edit-medium Bob, Janet, Allen, and Nancy.  (I’m sure Savannah is in there somewhere too.)

20140307-_DSC6373-Edit-mediumThis prominent rock formation is just on the other side of Camp Creek.


A fence can occasionally be seen while hiking.  I always marvel at the fact that there are fences out here. This hike is quite strenuous. The ranchers who constructed these fences must have been in excellent physical condition.

20140307-_DSC6397-Edit-medium Savannah hiking with Janet:

20140307-_DSC6418-Edit-medium A view of that same reddish rock formation from high on the hill that we had to climb to get to Ballantine Cabin.20140307-_DSC6421-Edit-mediumWe got our first view of the cabin shortly after reaching the top of the hill.  From there, we had to descend a steep(ish) trail with occasional loose rock.


A view of Ballantine Cabin. I didn’t take many photos of it this time and I had gotten more than a few from last year’s hike out to the cabin.

We continued on our way to the corral crossing through an opening in the fence in the process.  There was probably a barbed wire gate here at one time.20140307-_DSC6466-Edit-medium We saw a lot of black caterpillars on a short (1/2 mile to 1 mile) of the trail.  The caterpillars looked much darker than this; I used the +2 EV exposure for this photo in order to get a better look at it.

20140307-_DSC6477-medium We saw this large flattish slab of rock along the way.

20140307-_DSC6478-Edit-medium I think this is Fleabane:

20140307-_DSC6484-Edit-medium Savannah waits for the rest of the group to ascend the steep, thorny path on our way to the corral.

20140307-_DSC6499-Edit-medium An interesting rock formation somewhat past the corral.

20140307-_DSC6541-Edit-medium I took this photo from a large granite slab.

20140307-_DSC6568-Edit-medium This is the start of another steep, loose, and rocky descent.

20140307-_DSC6577-Edit-medium But the views are great from this location!  I took several photos here…

20140307-_DSC6598-Edit-medium I think this is the same reddish rock formation that we has passed earlier on the way out.

20140307-_DSC6607-Edit-medium A view of Red Mountain off in the distance.  Fountain Hills is off to the right.

20140307-_DSC6610-Edit-medium20140307-_DSC6628-Edit-medium I saw this dead tree as I was making my descent.



20140307-_DSC6643-Edit-medium A look back at where we had come from:

20140307-_DSC6646-Edit-medium Looking ahead again as I try to catch up with the rest of the group.

20140307-_DSC6655-Edit-medium Globemallow:20140307-_DSC6658-Edit-medium Nancy waits by the prominent rock formation at the intersection with the trail leading over to the cabin (which we had hiked earlier in the day).

20140307-_DSC6676-Edit-medium We had some big puffy clouds for a while, which made the sky more interesting.

20140307-_DSC6682-Edit-medium A saguaro at the top of a small rise on the way back.

20140307-_DSC6724-Edit-medium A look back as Bob, Allen, Savannah, Janet, and Nancy make their way along the Ballantine.

20140307-_DSC6730-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6736-Edit-medium We had some great views on the way back too…

20140307-_DSC6745-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6766-Edit-medium Brittlebush (and a great view):

20140307-_DSC6787-Edit-medium Another great view…

20140307-_DSC6793-Edit-medium A saguaro with lots of arms crowded together.  It has even more on the other side.  This saguaro is on the Pine Creek Loop with less than half a mile to go to the parking area.


View from Merchandise Market

Mara sent me this photo.  She took it while playing a wedding; this view was directly behind her chair.


Weaver’s Needle

A view of Weaver’s Needle from the Probrecito Staging Area, near Saguaro Lake.


An All Day Job

Sculptor Rasheas Mukwaira from Zimbabwe created this work, titled An All Day Job.  It was donated in 2009.  See photo of plaque for list of donors.



Coyote and Key

Sculptor Deon Duncan created this sculpture, titled Coyote and Key.  It was donated in 2012 by Akito and Yuko Masunaga in honor of their son Riku Noah Masunaga.



Quiet Pursuit

Quiet Pursuit, a sculpture of a bobcat, was created by artist Mike Dwyer.  It was donated in 2013 by Michael and Jeannie McGonigle and families.  (See photo of plaque for details.)

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Infinity Ring

This sculpture is Infinity Ring by Charles Sherman.  It was donated in 2013 by Dwight, Laura, and Lucas Johnson in memory of father and grandfather, Verne C. Johnson.

20140302-_DSC6145-Edit-mediumI returned the following evening and reshot the scene using  a 10-18mm lens.  It turned out that I used the same focal length as the previous night, 16mm, the difference being that there was more wind on the night of the second photo; the Fountain did not shoot as high allowing me to get it all in without having to go to a shorter focal length.20140303-_DSC6164-Edit-medium 20140302-_DSC6095-Edit-1000


I met Jonathon while I was at the Fountain Park as the sun was going down.  He and his sister were riding their bicycles while their parents walked slightly ahead.  He asked me what I was doing and I replied that I was taking a photo of the sign for the Coyote and Key sculpture so that I that I’d remember what the sculpture was named when I got home.

He asked me if I could take a photo of him.  I said, “sure”.  I set up my tripod and got the shot below.  I showed him the photo on my NEX-7’s LCD screen.  He liked it and wanted me to show it to his sister too.  As he was leaving he said, “I’m Jonathon. You won’t forget my name will you?”  I told him that I wouldn’t and, just to make sure, here’s his photo along with the story about how I came to take his picture.


A View from Butcher Jones Beach

Marilyn took this photo with her new Sony RX10:


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