Saturday, April 27, 2013

Springtime Friday Afternoon Hike

Finally Spring has finally arrived! How do I know? Well, the FOTY (first of the year) Broad-tailed Hummingbirds are buzzing around my yard and lapping up the nectar in the feeder.  One male arrived yesterday.  The temps are in the mid to upper 60Fs and the sun is shining brightly!

Late afternoon brought on the "sleepies", so I thought to myself that I could either lie down and take a nap or go outside and enjoy this wonderful weather while it lasts!  Not a hard choice.  I decide to hike up along the ridge line trail above the house.  So off I go, walking through my yard to my neighbor's trailhead to get up the hill.  On the way, my neighbor was out working in the yard so I stop to chat a bit.  He warned me that the last 3 times he and his dogs had been up, they had run into a cow and calf moose.  So off I tread, making noise along the way and keeping my eyes out for the pair; however, no moose were seen today. 

Along the narrow trail up hill,  I stop in a clearing to look back from where I had just come.

You can see the 2nd story and the balcony of my house just at the edge of the trees. 

Also along the trail I notice the budding Hawthorne trees. 

Also Glacier Lilies... 

and Shortstyle Bluebells were blooming.

My house sits at an elevation of 5100' +/-.  The top of the ridge is around 5450'.  About half way uphill, I come upon what I call the lower ridge road.  I follow it until I get to a 3 way intersection, naturally I take the one on the right leading to the top!

About half way up to the top, again I stop to look back from where I had come.

I reach the top out of breath, of course!  The wind is at a gale, a steady 10mph wind with occasional gusts that I have to brace against.  The view is spectacular.
Looking West (Weber Canyon)


South East towards the city of Morgan


The snow covered peak in the far distance is Powder Mountain Ski Resort.  You also notice the wide path here which is used by ATVs to turn around.

North East
(Snow Basin Ski Resort is along the right side of the mountain.)
I continue along the trail heading North enjoying the quiet except the crunch of my feet along the path.

The terrain here consists of crumbling shale rock, sagebrush and low standing scrub oak trees.

At the bottom of this long stretch I make a turn downhill to reconnect up with the lower ridge road again and return home.
All the while enjoying the views along the way!

Along the trail, an Old World Swallowtail dances in front of me before landing on the sagebrush.  This was the only shot I could get of him as he quickly took to flight, got caught up in a gust of wind and flew (blew) away!

I think the wind kept most of the birds away or down on the ground, but I did see a few:
American Robin
Spotted Towhee
Black-capped Chickadee
Black-billed Magpie
Tree Swallow

Thanks for taking a walk with me in My Mountain Green!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

A Few Signs of Spring

As Old Man Winter still lingers on, my yard birds are ready for Spring.  After being out the country for six weeks, it has taken about a week for the birds to rediscover or return to my seed and suet feeders.  However, light snow and cold temps have not kept the birds from shedding their winter clothing.  Here are just a few examples from the photos taken this morning:
American Goldfinch sporting Summer plumage.

Cassin's Finch with his bright red crown!

Evening Grosbeaks are glowing with their new GREEN bills.
Contrasting bill colors.  (This photo taken on January 13, 2013.)
A few more days of cold weather are expected before warming up to the 60Fs this weekend.  I am looking forward to Spring in My Mountain Green.

Thanks for stopping by.  

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Not My Mountain Green!

Brazilian Parque Nacional for Foz do Iguaçu

As you can see from the caption above, this photo is not in Utah!  My husband and I have just returned from a 6 week trip to South America touring parts of Brazil, Argentina and Chile. What a trip of a lifetime!  We blogged our way along to show our friends and family just a small portion of what we experienced.  Now back to stark reality of work and real life as well as exhaustion, we still have to complete our last few posts.  I invite you to take a glimpse at our adventure, check out our "Forty Days & Forty Nights in South America" travel blog.