Header photo

I took this photo in the eastern Sierras, off Highway 395, at the Owens Gorge Road. I love those mailboxes and every time we travel to the Sierras, we drive by them just to see them!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Fall leaves backlit~Sunday stills Challenge~120411

Red maple leaves back lit for this week's Sunday Stills Challenge.I found these leaves up at the horse ranch.  After today's wind, they are probably all gone.  To visit SSC, please go to:  http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Rose~Sunday Stills Challenge~112711

We're supposed to show an example of bokeh, which I had to look up and read about.  I'm not really sure if this is an example or not!  I still like it because of the black background and the leaves ARE out of focus, so who knows?  Sunday Stills Challenge for November 27, 2011.  To view other SSC participants, please go to:  http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Red leaves and blue sky~SkyWatch Friday~112511

It was another beautiful, warm, clear southern California day today and I found these red leaves against a clear, blue sky.  Ahhhh....what more could I want?  My family, my horses, all is well!  Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.  SkyWatch Friday for November 25, 2011.  To visit SWF, please go to:  http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Waterfall at Desert Springs~Rock Formations~Sunday Stills Challenge~102311

This beautiful waterfall in the desert is at the Palm Desert Desert Springs Marriott.  It is next to the self-parking lot and sometimes I walk over to it after dropping off hubby for work.  Sometimes there are cattle egrets next to it, but not on this morning.  I love to stop and just listen to it.  See the interesting rock work?  Sunday stills Challenge for October 23, 2011. To see Sunday Stills, please go to:  http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Moon Ridge Cove~Friday Fences~October 21, 2011

Pretty fence and gate up in Garner Valley, CA.  Friday Fences for October 21, 2011.  To visit Friday Fences, please go to:  http://lifeaccordingtojanandjer.blogspot.com/

Monday, October 17, 2011

Yellow grasses~Mellow Yellow Monday~101711

While at the park on Saturday morning, I noticed these tall, yellow grasses.  I don't know what they are...maybe a variety of Pampas grass? Whatever they are, they certainly were doing well in the park!  Mellow Yellow Monday for October 17, 2011. If you wish to visit Mellow Yellow Monday, please go to:  http://mellowyellowmonday.blogspot.com/

Sunday, October 16, 2011

At the park~Sunday Stills Challenge~101611

This week's challenge was to have something in the foreground and when I went to the park yesterday, I saw this bench in front of one of the ponds there.  That isn't a real fisherman, either.  It's a statue.  He's been standing there for many, many years now!  It was a quiet morning at the park yesterday, but by afternoon, the kids are playing, families are having picnics and BBQs and the park gets quite busy!  Sunday stills Challenge for October 16, 2011.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Dunes to mountains~SkyWatch Friday~101411

Sand dunes and dead trees near Indio, CA on a stormy afternoon one day last week.  Now temps are back up in the 100's, unfortunately.  Our "cold spell" is gone and the weekend will be warm again, but on this afternoon, the sky was quite dynamic.  SkyWatch Friday for October 14, 2011. To visit SkyWatch Friday, please go to:  http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Vanishing Point, the Sierra~Sunday Stills Challenge~100911

We found this field and fence up in the Sierra Nevada in June.  Hubby and I left to our trip the day after school was over.  I came home the previous afternoon, packed, and away we went the next morning.  I like how the fence seems to disappear...or does it?  Sunday Stills Challenge 100911

Monday, September 26, 2011

Tree by Mono Lake~Creative Exchange~092611

This lone tree was by the western shore of Mono Lake, up past the county park.  I am always drawn to bare trees.  Creative Exchange for September 26, 2011.  To visit the Creative Exchange, please go to:  http://www.lgordonphotography.com/

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Sierra Nevada fall color~Sunday Stills Challenge~092511

Hubby and I took a 3 day weekend last weekend and drove up to the Sierra Nevada, looking for fall color.  It was still too early, alas, but we did find some early leaves here and there.  We first headed up the road in Bishop, which goes up to South and North Lake.  We took the South Lake turnoff and found these colorful leaves.  He doesn't have any days off in October and neither do I, so this was our only chance this fall to get up there before the resorts close in mid-October.  We stayed in Silver Lake, at the Silver Lake Resort cabins.  There was still a lot of water running in streams and rivers and we still saw waterfalls.  I'm glad we had an opportunity to return to the Sierra and I'll be posting more pics of our trip. To visit Sunday Stills Challenge, please go to:  sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Sunday, August 7, 2011

"Vanishing Point"~Community Photo Challenge 080711

This bridge is at the Devil's Postpile National Monument, near Mammoth Lakes, CA.  When hubby and I were on the bridge, a young squirrel came running halfway across it and stopped when he saw us.  He really wanted to get past us, to the other side, but he was frozen with fear.  I could almost read his mind...he wanted to cross the bridge, but we were in the way!  We froze and just watched him.  He finally gathered up his courage and crossed it and vanished into the rocks.  I didn't even move to take a photo of him, fearing that any movement would send him back the way he came from, so I didn't get a picture of him, but I enjoyed watching him.  "Vanishing Point" for Community Photo Challenge for August, 2011. To view other participants in this challenge, please visit:  http://communityphotochallenge.blogspot.com/

"Water"~Community Photo Challenge~080711

Twin Lakes, above Mammoth, CA.  Hubby and I were here in June, 2011.  Yes, there was still a lot of snow on the mountains and higher elevations.  We stayed at the Tamarack Lodge.  "Water"~Community Photo Challenge for August, 2011. To see other participants, please go to:  http://communityphotochallenge.blogspot.com/

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Early morning at Twin Lakes~SkyWatch Friday~072111

Early morning light at Twin Lakes, CA. Twin Lakes is just northwest of Mammoth Lakes. SkyWatch Friday for July 21, 2011. To see other skywatchers, go to: http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 17, 2011

"People"~Sunday Stills Challenge for July 17, 2011

Last summer I traveled to Temecula, CA with a friend for the day. We wandered around the town and came across this huge mural, which covered the entrances to the police department. I was so intrigued with it, I took a lot of photos of it. It shows Temecula in its early days. As a history major, I'm always interested in the past events of a location and this mural captured Temecula's past. Look at the clothes and the transportation! What an interesting mural! "People" for Sunday Stills Challenge, July 17, 2011.

Mammoth Village~Scenic Sunday~071711

This was Mammoth Village over the July 4th weekend. Yes, Southern Californians, that is SNOW! There was snow alongside the road from Mammoth up to the ski resort and beyond! In JULY!!! Scenic Sunday for July 17, 2011.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Devil's Postpile~Stone~Shutterday~071111

We took the mandatory bus shuttle from Mammoth Village down to the Devil's Postpile over the July 4th weekend. I hadn't been there for...over 40 years. When I last went, there wasn't a shuttle. You just drove your car down to it. Nowdays, however, the bus is mandatory. Tickets are $7.00 each and it's well worth it to let somebody else navigate that road! Hubby had never seen the postpile before and he was absolutely in awe! Those columnal basalt pillars are incredible. We watched several of the other visitors from the bus and they were all amazed by them. They look like they were carved from the mountain. Some were perfect hexagons. Others were perfect quadrilaterals. Amazing! A few went off to hike to the top, but we stayed below and explored the area around it. "Stone" for Shutterday, July 11, 2011. Here's the link to Shutterday: http://shutterday.com/

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Twin Lakes, early morning~SOOC Sunday~071011

On our last day at Twin Lakes, above Mammoth, CA, hubby and I woke up early to take some photos in the early morning light. There's nothing like early morning light, right? Yup...except you have to occasionally use your tripod. I just talked about using tripods on one of my other blogs (http://rav4adventures.blogspot.com/2011/07/tripods.html), so I decided to post these photos here. I looked up the properties for each one and I'll post them here. The bottom photo was taken at 1/15 second, F9, ISO 100. I like to just keep my camera on ISO 100. That way, the images don't get too grainy. Hubby sometimes sets his on a variable ISO, but I don't...just my own personal preference. I'm not yet confident enough using my manual settings to do that. The top one was taken first, so it is at 1/2 second, F9, ISO 100. I've learned that I HAVE to use my tripod at anything below 1/60 of a second. My hands just don't keep the camera steady enough! And, I've learned that from having too many out-of-focus photos! So, now I drag out my tripod in early morning or late afternoon (early evening) light situations. I really enjoy my tripod...it isn't heavy and it is fairly easy to just sling it over my shoulder and off I go! NO editing done on either photo...these are SOOC. SOOC Sunday for July 10, 2011. To visit SOOC Sunday, please go to: http://www.murrieta365.com/ Well, apparently Mr. Linky isn't cooperating this morning, so I don't know if I'll get this posted to SOOC Sunday or not! Here's the link to SOOC Sunday: http://www.murrieta365.com/2011/07/sooc.html

"F" is for frozen~Sunday Stills Challenge~071011

A frozen lake and frisky marmots...that's what we found in Yosemite National Park. Actually, the lake is Tioga Lake, which is just outside the eastern entrance to the park. When we were there in mid-June (June 16), this lake was completely frozen and the entrance to the park was still closed due to extremely high snow levels. I'd been watching videos on the Yosemite cam about the snow plows and snow removal equipment at Olmstead Point and hubby and I decided to drive up the Tioga Pass to see if the entrance was open or not. Nope. It didn't open until June 18th...We returned to the Sierra over the July 4 weekend and this lake still had ice on it! A LOT of ice! The road into the park was open, but there was still a lot of snow piled up in some places. The lakes were full, the streams and rivers were running wildly, and the meadows were full of water. I've never seen so much water at Yosemite and we've been there half a dozen times over the last few years. The Sierra had a record snowfall this winter (178% of normal) and there were even flood warnings from all the runoff. I took these photos early one morning and when we pulled into the turnoff, these frisky marmots were playing and completely ignored us! "F" for frozen and frisky ... Sunday Stills Challenge for July 10, 2011. Oh, and marmots are a mammal, a member of the squirrel family. They like to live in rocky places and we noticed other marmot families along the road in Yosemite. These two were very playful and allowed us to get close to them! To visit Sunday Stills, please go to: http://sundaystills.wordpress.com/

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Yosemite~Weekend Reflections~070911

I took all of these photos during our day at Yosemite National Park, which was on July 1st. In the top one, Tioga Lake was still partially frozen on July 1st. Isn't that amazing? I'm sure it is free of ice now, but I could be mistaken. At over 9,000 feet, those high lakes still have freezing temps at night and parts of the park still had a lot of snow on them. We were there mid-June and the east entrance to the park wasn't even open yet because of late snow removal. But, it opened on June 18 (the day we left) and we returned June 29 through July 4th to the Sierra. I read somewhere that they had 178% of their normal snow fall this year and that's why the Tioga Pass was so late opening and why the higher elevations still had so much snow left on them, including the Mammoth Lakes area where we stayed for 4 nights. We always enjoy our trips to the Sierra and are already planning our next one. Weekend Reflections for July 9, 2011. All photos were taken in Yosemite National Park using my Nikon D40x on manual settings. There was water everywhere in the park. Waterfalls, lakes full, rivers running high...it was really a different view of the park from last summer, when we were there in August. To see other participants, please go to: http://newtowndailyphoto.blogspot.com/?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Tioga Lake, early morning~SkyWatch Friday~070811

Hubby and I woke up at 4 a.m. one morning on our recent trip to the Sierra and headed up the Tioga Pass to Yosemite. Along the way, we stopped at Tioga Lake, which was still partially frozen on July 2nd. The eastern entrance to Yosemite just opened up a couple of weeks earlier and at that time, this lake was completely frozen! What a beautiful, stark scene it was. When we returned on this morning, there was still ice along the edges of the lake. Skywatch Friday for July 8, 2011. I'll post more photos about our trip over the next week. We didn't have any Internet in our cabin the entire time we were there. To see other participants, please go to: http://skyley.blogspot.com/

Saturday, April 30, 2011

California poppy

Just some California sunshine to brighten up your day! I planted some wildflower seeds last fall in my front yard and I now have desert lupine, California poppies, and some kind of red salvia. I'll need to reseed soon, however, as summer here in the desert will soon be upon us.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Above Big Pine~SkyWatch Friday~April 29, 2011

Hubby and I found a road which wound up into the Sierras above Big Pine, so we followed it to the end, where it was closed off for the winter. We and several other cars stopped and got out to explore this beautiful area. Unfortunately, at some point, a fire roared down the canyon, destroying several homes and forcing the evacuation of the entire town. It's always saddening to see such destruction. But, up in the canyon, all was peaceful and quiet. SkyWatch Friday for April 29, 2011.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Early morning sun and petroglyphs~SOOC Sunday~042411

Early one morning, hubby and I headed out to find the 3rd petroglyph site outside of Bishop, CA. We had a general idea where it was and found the dirt road down to it. We were the only car there all morning. The area was still in the shadow of the White Mountains, but as the sun came up over the mountains, we were out climbing among the rocks and I looked up to see these rocks and one of them had petroglyphs on it! There were literally many, many petroglyphs here and we just barely began to explore this area, but we'd been there for two hours, so we headed back to town and breakfast! I would like to go back some morning and explore it further. Maybe our next trip? SOOC Sunday for April 24, 2011. If you do go exploring in these areas, please be careful! As I was walking through the sagebrush, I heard a "sssssssssssssss" a couple of times. I didn't see anything, but the third time, I went into instinct mode...heart pounding, adreneline rushing, and I literally ran back to the road! I didn't want to stick around to see what it was! I definitely could feel the spirits of the "old ones" here! To view other participants, please go to: http://www.murrieta365.com/

Saturday, April 23, 2011

"Sky", Photo Time, Day One, April 24, 2011

This was the sky above the mountains above Big Pine, CA on Thursday afternoon. It was snowing in the higher elevations of the Sierras and the road was closed beyond this point. Photo Time, Day One for April 24, 2011..."sky".

Alabama Hills wildflowers~Sunday Stills Challenge~042411

Hubby and I just returned from 6 days in the eastern Sierras! Ahhhh....what beauty! And, there were plenty of wildflowers there to admire, including these! I believe that the yellow ones along the highway (Highway 395) are desert dandylions. I found the other ones up in the Alabama Hills and I'm not sure what they are! The Alabama Hills are just outside of Lone Pine, CA, up the Whitney Portal road. Sunday Stills Challenge for April 24, 2011 "wildflowers".