It’s A Boy

_40A6600_IR.jpg

If you remember a post I did a little while back about Pat’s Fawn (https://kritterspix.com/2018/09/17/pats-fawn/), we’ve been fortunate enough to see it a few times and kinda watch it grow up, which has been a real joy.   It’s starting to loose it’s spots.

_40A6649_IR.jpg

_40A6650_IR.jpg

But it’s still playful and skittish… and wonderfully fun to watch.  Mom still dotes on her… except, apparently it’s a him.

_40A6629_IR.jpg

I caught a glimpse of a little bump on his head where his antlers will be soon.

_40A6663_IR.jpg

We can still call him Spots though, right?!

Mountain Wildlife

One of my favorite things about living up north in the mountains is the wildlife we get to see.  I never saw wildlife in the big city.    Here on the mountain we see a wide variety of species.

_40A6462_IR.jpg

Like this elusive fox.  I have seen fox on occasion, but have struggled to get a good shot.  This one was no exception, taken in the dark with a high ISO, spotlighted with a flashlight.  I had a hard time focusing in the dark, even with the flashlight… and today’s camera’s aren’t intended for manual focus.

_40A6550_IR.jpg

We also saw this curious raccoon.  He was searching for grub.

_40A6517_IR.jpg

We watched him (her?) for quite awhile (albeit difficult in the dark)…. another animal we rarely see, particularly as they are nocturnal.

Incidentally, the fox came at the same time… but didn’t stick around.  The fox seemed quite put off by the raccoon, and quickly circled the raccoon then made haste and left.  Pity, I would have liked to have gotten a better shot.

Morning Light

We often head out to the rim for morning animal shots.  It makes for a beautiful drive, and awesome scenery.  If we’re lucky we see animals… and even luckier if I get a good shot.

fogglare_IR.jpg

This particular morning we saw NO animals… but we did get some moody light, that made for some interesting shots.

mosstree hort_IR.jpg

The rain and dew provided cool back light opportunities.

raybeamstar_IR.jpg

I just loved the way the light streamed in between the trees.  It created such a picturesque scene as we drove through our forest.

Tinder Run-off

burnreflt hort2_LR.jpg

We have been trying to take advantage of the moody skies, fog, and rain to capture the aftermath of the Tinder Fire.  Only yesterday, this ‘water hole’ was dry.  But with a recent rain storm, and lack of vegetation destroyed by the fire, the water ran down the hill and formed this instant lake, crippled by ash scum coating the top.

sootreflctn_LR.jpg

It’s one of the many features and stories told by the aftermath of the Tinder Fire that I want to capture for posterity, having lived through it.

horsex_LR.jpg

If only these signs of the fire could talk and tell the story for themselves of the fear and danger approaching.  The charcoal and cinder, soot and burn left in it’s wake as testament to the flames that rolled through.

treepeel2_LR.jpg

It’s a new day post – Tinder Fire, and may we all remember the horror and effect of forest fires and the camaraderie of others during difficult times.

reflectn_LR.jpg

burngbush_LR.jpg

burnmist_LR.jpg

See my additional post here… https://kritterspaw.com/2018/07/22/tinder-aftermath/

 

 

 

Tinder Aftermath

charcoal tinder_IR.jpg

They opened the forest today, against my advice.  Not that they consulted me… but I made sure to voice my concerns.  We have had 1/2″ of rain in the last week.  That hardly seemed like enough rain to justify opening up our burn areas to traffic (and campfires), but thankfully we have gotten more rain today.

firstgrowth_IR.jpg

brokentree_IR.jpg

We were anxious to see the effects on the forests we call our backyard.  While it has a tremendous amount of burn, scorched earth, and sad landscape, I was relieved to see some green trees.

tallburn_IR.jpg

new grass_IR.jpg

There was new growth already cropping up which we found moving and inspirational after the trauma our forest has had.  It made me think of the resilience of our community that continues to re-build and heal from this terrible event.

treeskeleton_IR.jpg

burnback_IR.jpg

I actually found the ‘burn sculptures’ to be fascinating and eery.  The textures and character left by the fire scar has now become part of our new forest, and I thoughtfully walked through our new landscape and tried to capture some of the tales it tells.

treecave_IR.jpg

pineguardhort_IR.jpg

I hope to get back out there, and document some of our forest’s stories, and will share them as they unfold.  For now, I was just happy to be able to walk among the trees, see several elk doing the same, and finding patches of green and new growth.

tinder brown_IR.jpg

clearacrkturn_IR.jpg

Tinder Fire

It’s been a month since the Tinder Fire, and our community continues to heal.

I first wrote about it here….   https://kritterspaw.com/2018/05/02/tinder-fire/

We had a community craft fair this July 4th weekend to celebrate our freedom and independence.  Talented members of community shared their talents, hand crafted goods and tokens of the Tinder Fire, along with their stories of desperate helplessness during the fire.  It seems an appropriate time to remember our own turmoil, our survival, and tenaciousness to rebuild.

flames_comp_LR-3_IR.jpg

This fire was like ‘The Devil’, as it tore through our lives with terror in it’s eyes as it faced us down in our neighborhoods and communities, with it’s 40′ flames and spiraling gusting winds.  It created it’s own fire storm and took daylight and turned it dark; green turned to charred black; and ground to ash.

impending_LR_IR.jpg

But we have persevered and are re-building.  Only a month later, many who lost homes have excavated the ruins and cleaned their grounds, as they prepare to set new foundation and build back up their lives and their homes.  We have seen more fire-wising since the fire, than ever before, as people rake pine needles and clear dead and downed trees.

org on blk_LR_IR.jpg

The goodness that we have witnessed during and after the event is what I want to remember and not forget.  Neighbors helping neighbors; the few that stayed putting out fires and doing what they could for their own communities; the many donations of water, food, and supplies to the fire house and their communities; donations of time and money to help those in need.  It makes my heart feel good to see so much kindness to so many.

engine run_LR_IR.jpg

It’s in a time of despair that the best (or worst) comes out in people.   Our neighborhoods are forever scarred, but we are stronger together, more so now than ever.

lonetree clos_LR_IR.jpg

 

 

Big Lake, Greer AZ

boulderhill2_IR.jpg

There are a number of little lakes around the Show Low / Heber area in northeast AZ.  Originally named, Big Lake is one of the larger lakes, with multiple camp grounds, and boat rentals that make up this Recreational Area.

lonetreelake_IR.jpg

fisherburst2_IR.jpg

There are signs everywhere to be aware of bear… but we didn’t see any, only Journey who enjoyed a dip in the water during the water summer sun.

journey shake_IR.jpg

biglakehill_IR.jpg

We did see some antelope which is always a treat, along with the occasional deer and elk.

antelopestand_IR.jpg

antelopefam_IR.jpg