Thursday, December 23, 2010

Black Canyon: Yellow Jacket Swarms and Hedgehog Rocks (Day 19)


7 Sept

Two Green-tailed Towhees under my tent vestibule woke me up - little goofballs! Made an exceedingly strong cup(s) of coffee and oatmeal while watching my little bird buddies. After we got our stuff together, we drove the 2 hours to the North Rim side of the park for an 8 mile hike. I parked Vladimir and we were quickly mobbed by yellow jackets. We could hardly get out of the car - they had surrounded it. I think something similar has happened in past nightmares of mine. I really don't do well with buzzing. Buzzing doesn't do well for my sanity. Managed to get out of the car eventually and the yellow jackets were just freaking swarming it. Hundreds of 'em. Made it really difficult to get backpacks and stuff out. Yikes. They were snarfing all the dead bugs off the bumper. Huh. Interesting. (I looked at the bumper when we got back and all of the bugs were gone)
The hike was awesome and the only people we passed were three of them on our way back, close to the trailhead. Excellent. Again, the Black Canyon is just plain impressive. Zac and I are going to have to go back and do a few day trip into the canyon. Too much fun not to!
The light wasn't so great on the hike, so I didn't take too many landscape shots. Still an exceedingly beautiful place though. Thunderheads were coming in once we got to the top so we hiked back fairly quickly. The rain held off until after we made dinner luckily and the cloud cover made it less chilly than the night before which was kinda nice. The plan for a short evening hike was thwarted by the rain, so I got some reading done in my tent. (doesn't that lichen covered rock on the bottom look exactly like a hedgehog??)

8 comments:

Woody said...

All the shots are excellent. I really like that lone pine tree and that rock it is growing from is funky! Merry Christmas to you and Zac!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

All of your images in this series are delightful Jill, yet the first one just speaks to me. That lone little green growth among the huuge rock boulders, making it's way to the sky above. It somehow has meaning beyond that photograph. Yellow Jackets, nasty little insects, and at least they cleaned up your car nicely. Merry Christmas, if I forget later ~

Carolyn Ford said...

wow, it does look like a hedgehog! What a grand place to hike! I admire all of you who back-pack and carry all those extra pounds on your back. We do extensive day hiking but get back to the comforts of a hotel after dark...these are wonderful parts of our world!

ladyfi said...

What a stunning place to be. Merry Christmas.

Benikos place said...

Dear friends, we wish you happy holidays

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

I like your agave(?) photo. A similar photo shot closer in and done in black & white just won the grand prize on an Ansel Adams photo site of some sort. Sorry I don't have a link to it for you. Why no close-up shot of the yellow jackets feasting on your bumper? :)

Gaelyn said...

At least the yellow jackets weren't feasting on you. Black canyon does have some great vistas. Really like the hedgehog.

Happy Holidays to you and yours!

John S. Mead said...

Great job on the Black Canyon...I'm new to your blog, but am adding you to my blogroll! I worked as a ranger in the adjacent Curecanti NRA back in the summer of '88 and fell in love with the whole area! Thanks for sharing it!