Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Creek Doe

Paddled back to the Creek at Last Light...thought to go to Creek's End, but tourists about--only one or two fit thereabout!...turning back, sighted Doe, maybe Fawn grown up,.. clip,...and a second Doe, maybe Mama Doe... clip...Kingfisher flew by, chattering...Does continued to Creek's End, I left off to go to Last Chance for dinner...on the way, four more Does, maybe two were Fawns grown up....sunny blueblue in morning, hazy evening, cold...hold up in the Cabin all day--Valley crowded with tourists!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Creek's End Buck

Paddled back to the Woods and Creek's End at Last Light...quiet...on the Shingle, turned from looking upriver, and sighted Buck approaching from the Diversion Channel...found a spot to wait, and, well, wish I did clip in hd, and that I had one of those expensive ball head tripods!...still a cool clip....sunny blueblue cold...friend at dinner asked if I'd seen more Eagles...'no'...'well?'....tomorrowmorrow, I'll go look for Eagles!

Cabin Cedar Chickaree

After Breakfast, yesterday, Chickaree about the Cabin Cedar...bit of a challenge taking pics!...and a Second Chickaree scooted across the Road...both Chickarees looked to be young....sunny blue blue cold...heard Owl returning from work last Night...maybe both Owls...Skunk has taken up residents in the Shed...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Creek's End Kingfisher

After Breakfast, paddled out to Ozone Beach...sighted Mallards at Cottonwood Bend...thought to follow, but thought too to have tripod, so returned to the Cabin...paddled out to Creek's End...Mallards about, and Kingfisher!...faraway clips and pic...in the bit with the Mallards flying, Kingfisher is perched in the Sapling Cottonwood...at the time, I couldn't sight Kingfisher, and only glimpsed Kingfisher's movement on reviewing the clip...followed Mallards and Kingfisher to Chapel Bridge....another clip there...and followed Kingfisher back to Creek's End...and almost followed Kingfisher back to Chapel Bridge!...but left off...did get to see Kingfisher dive two times....very cool...Ouzel, Pileated, and Flicker about too...sunny blublue cold...Merry Xmas!!!....

Another name for Kingfisher is Halycon, and Greek Legend has a tale, which can be read here at wiki:

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Tenaya Lake Skaters

Yesterday, got a ride from friend to Mariposa, and picked up new battery...Redshoulder Hawk pics while thereabout...for sometime....with help, like three of my neighbors going through their toolboxes for a 10mm socket...for some reason, known only to car manufacturers, and car mechanics, one battery connection is sae, and the other metric...'I just need sae wrench?'...and a 'yes' okayed a thirty eight dollar set of sae wrenches...hmmph...for just one wrench, not being sure what size...well, need tool kit my own self...anyway, a group effort was successful, found a 10mm socket, and this morning, Silver started right up with new battery, and I rolled up to Tuolumne...in the early morning, one skater on Tenaya Lake, which I thought very bold, until on the afternoon return, saw skaters all over the Lake!...and a very happy bunch, I'd say!...sunny blueblue, ultramarine blue, cold....I have some pics of the Meadows, for sometime...clips too of the skaters...a fine day!...bottom pic is the Asparagus Tree on Pieweack Dome...

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Mirror Lake Bald Eagle

Well, after finishing Yesterday's post up before Dawn, and playing wow a bit, I geared up, and thought to roll up to Tunnel View to join the Xmas Bird Walk group there....but it's been cold, and I haven't rolled around much in Silver, and when I turned the key, all I got was clic clic clic....battery very gone...still a little bit of headlights, so kept trying, and may have made things worse..left off not being able to turn the headlights off, and turning the lever made the alarm go off, which, with no battery power, was a kinda tiny alarm!....anyway, repairs for sometime...gathered the gear, and paddled over to the Village to join group starting there..early a bit, and after hot chocolate, and a sit and wait awhile, everyone arrived, and a fine day commenced...report for sometime...towards the end of the walkabout, I was lagging behind, and saw group ahead , pointing, and saying, 'Eagle'...'oh, dont be pulling my leg!' I said trotting to catch up...and there was Eagle, perched on a Tall Snag above Tenaya Creek...pic and clips with the video crop of the newer camera...oh...little pic was with the waterproof...surprised I got that....just pointed skyward when Eagle flew out and over my head, pestering Raven in pursuit...Eagle was headed back to Mirror Lake...by myself, I would have followed!...but Count Day has a kinda routine, and time...sunny blueblue, cold in the morning, cool in afternoon...needless to say, everyone thought it very cool to see Eagle!!....friend reports seeing Bald Eagle at Nevada Falls last Summer, which I may have mentioned in earlier post....

Kingfisher Bridge Post

Yesterday Morning, out and about before Sunrise....Kingfisher chattering at Creek's End....Kingfisher's 'Inn' must be thereabout...too dark for pics...and thought to go to Chapel Bridge, and maybe Kingfisher would be there...and was!...but illusive as usual...followed Tree to Tree from Chapel Bridge to Sentinel Bridge, and back again...oh...I have pic of Ice on Merced... took Kingfisher pic and clip up from the Shingle downstream from Chapel Bridge...thought is now to to arrive at the Shingle before Sunrise, find some Trees for a blind, and just wait, and maybemaybe, Kingfisher will pose...it would be this Morning's Quest (it's way before Sunrise at moment), but I have sorta plans to join the Xmas Bird Count Walk...one group is to start at Tunnel View, another at Village...I say sorta plans, as Tioga has opened again...and I took the day off just for the Count, and, well, too many choices....sunny blue coldcold, but no wind, and air dry, so cold tolerable...report of Does and Fawns gamboling, somewhere--A Meadow, I think...Bird Count day is kinda like voting...one's vote matters little, but to give one's attention to such matters with friends on Count Day, matters a lot, I'd say....

Friday, December 16, 2011


After Breakfast, geared up, and paddled back to the Creek, across to Deer House, and over to Chapel Bridge...quiet, until I got to the Bridge, and Kingfisher was chattering...followed to Sentinel Bridge....one farfar away pic near the Bridge--Kingfisher perched in Cedar I took photo of Hawk, Redshoulder, Cedar, last year...Redshoulders are noticeably absent this year!...continued to the Village for mail, and returned through the Oaks, where I sighted Hawk Redtail, atop the Tallest Oak...pics and clips...sat a long while on the Split Rail Fence by Bobcat's Apple Tree, and watched to see Hawk's interest in the noisy Grey Squirrels in the Trees to my left...Blue Jays about..pic...Hawk just changed position, and I left off to return to the Cabin....hazy sunlight, cold...Two Does in Bobcat Meadow, over by the Snags to the North of the Boardwalk...that area of the Meadow I dont have a name for!...Hawk looks to be Two Top Pine Hawk, which I have pics of from two years ago atop Two Top Pine (checked--Tall Oak Hawk has darker chest, though hard to tell wth backlighting!)...and I have like three years back pics and clips of Hawk perched atop the Tall Oak at just this same time of year!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Took just the cameras with on an errand walk to the Village yesterday morning (time now is Sunrise today!)....heard, and then sighted, Kingfisher at the Creek Bridge...one faraway pic, and followed Kingfisher two Bridges back into the Creek Delta...Forest pic up along the way (Kingfisher not in that one)...Kingfisher posed at the Bridge that goes to the Muir view, and I was able to set the camera, propped with my Bandanna, on a Bridge Post, and got the clip up....Chickaree was about...pic...and Little Birds, Kinglets I think...bz bz bz ts ts ts...left off, and continued to Village...Four Point Buck thereabout...Acorn Woodpeckers in the Oaks...Ravens...Village quiet, and sat awhile there with hot chocolate...bought Book in the Gallery about Oaks...Live Oaks along the Rocky Slope don't look to have Acorns either....on return, White Headed Woodpecker by the Creek...pic...and more Little Birds at Lower Falls Crosswalk...so little traffic, I could stand there and hear Little Birds!....sunnyhazy, cold...report of Kestrel almost catching Ouzel, but not sure when...reporter takes Critter pics too, but tends to lump together sightings from years ago, and I'm always asking, 'When?'..Critter reports are kinda timeless and set off from the current day to day...off to Breakfast, and maybe another walk...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

no pics today

I do have a pic of a Four Point Buck that ran towards me out of the Woods while I was returning on the Use Path after a short walk to Ozone Beach this morning....looked myself back into the Woods to see maybe if Bear was about--report of Bear in Housekeeping yesterday Evening--Woods quiet....Valley very quiet, Critters wise, and tourist wise!, nowabout....the Audubon Xmas Count walkabout is coming up this Sunday in the Valley, and Yesterday morning I was out at Sunrise for a practice walk...Raven call outside the Cabin....quiet until I reached Creek's End, and Kingfisher thereabout chattering....followed Kingfisher to Cottonwood Bend..Six Mallards along the way in the Merced...these may be the same Mallards I took so many pics of last Winter, or at least these Mallards are hanging around the Valley too...rounding Cottonwood Bend, Three Ouzels, chasing and chattering and singing...oh...at Cottonwood Bend, sighted Kingfisher, and glimpsed Kingfisher diving into the River...first time to see Kingfisher dive....tried for pics....but no luck...Kingfisher is very skittish!...one photog about at Half Stump, doing scenic pics in diligent manner, and I thought to enquire about their effort while sitting on Log at Cottonwood Bend waiting for Kingfisher....photog moved my way, and I wondered if they thought same, and arrived at same conclusion--not a good time for chit chat, time to work....and it is work...and that morning cold!..anyway, continued to Two Top Pine Meadow...quiet...along the Merced, sighted Ravens, usually paired, and maybe Six Acorn Woodpeckers....tried for pics, but too high in the Leafless Cottonwoods....and heard maybe two DownyOrHairy Woodpeckers....continued to Beaver Bend... quiet....no tracks in the Sand thereabout...One Coyote Track back at Creek's End.....crossed the Road, and sighted Blue Jay, then Blue Jays, then lots of Blue Jays, and scolding up in the Rocks at Rocky Point....tried to scramble up to looksee...maybe Hawk, or Bobcat, or Coyote, my thought....but too difficult to get through everything quick, and I made a lot of noise, and when I could sight, Blue Jays quiet....continued to the New Indian Village construction....several Acorn Woopeckers, and Flicker call, and while in the Rocks, sighted Winter Wren, I think...Wren was making like chit chit chit telegraph call....maybe White Headed Woodpecker...need to check pic....continued behind Camp 4....quiet...and around back to the Cabin, dropped off gear, and to Breakfast.....hmmph...I've been collecting old Species counts in the Valley, and the oldtime estimates (1930) for Species that are year round residents is like somewhere between 16 and 24....off the top of my head, I can get to 17...oh...more on this on its own page sometime!....sunny blueblue yesterday, and maybe today, with some haze, and coldcold.....yesterday, no afternoon walk...some errands in Village...rolled over, and looked about for Deer....quiet....one report of Two Does in Housekeeping...One Doe, and maybe it was Fawn, with injured Back Leg....all the new stuff of the computer arrived....wireless router, upgrade for wow (collectors edition!), headphones, and book, mystery stories from an Australian writer, the tales of Napoleon Bonaparte, who Tony Hillerman sited as inspiration for his detectives Leaphorn and Chee....so yesterday and today a lot of computer diversion...really diverting today as router worked a little while, then dsl moden went south, and much consternation at the thought of another round of talking to phone support....in india or somewhere!....but tonight, around one am, all the little lights were green, and 'am using just the dsl cable until I sort out if the router is causing problem...anywayanyway....oh...almost went to Tuolumne...up early, weather clear, Tioga has been open, but it closed again just after I had Breakfast, and was hearing all the fine reports of sights to see...Frozen Lakes and River....it's been a pattern...Tioga open during my work week, and closed on my days off!....oh!....Frog croaking at the Camp 4 Climber's Wall...Rocks thereabout still covered on edges and such with white resin chalk....it would be nice if it would Rain, and Snow!!

Monday, December 5, 2011


Out and about for a short rollover to the Village for Mail...Book came....Muir Among the Animals The Wildlife Writings of John Muir, Lisa Mighetto, editor, Sierra Club Books....it has the the Atlantic Monthly article on Birds in the Valley I mentioned in earlier post, which I want to do a post on, for sometime....I can lay back on the Bunk and just daydream about Muir and conservation of Nature for hours on end, trying to sort it out....like, just when did Muir become a conservationist?.....there's a passage in the Bird bit about Robin hunting in Old San Francisco, where Muir would spend time away from the Valley in his 'scribble den', writing such articles....friend and I had a talk about just how long Muir was actually a resident in the Valley....compared to some of my friends hereabout, and even to myself after eight years, Muir was a 'tourist'....and that reminds me of Richard Henry Dana...Dana's notoriety for his visit to California, and maritime laws, is all out of proportion with his actual time in California and being on Sailing Ships...but like Muir, he has expressive skills, with writing and discussion, that are beyond the usual....Dana Point Harbor, in Dana Point, has a replica of the Pilgrim, Dana's ship, and a Marine Museum of Ocean Critters and such, and, well, the Harbor is built over what once was some of the best Tide Pooling Rocks on the Coast thereabout....and when thereabout, I think about Dana, and Muir..ah, a curio....sunny blueblue coldcold...if I seem diverted a bit lately, well, I am, by the WOW, world of warcraft video game....wow has to be seen and played to understand this, and I'm reluctant to be the one to introduce it to, well, anyone...one day a friend told me about their playing the  game, and their command of all the characters and realms and such reminded me of wild life enthusiasts who know fauna and flora hereabout, and Valley history,  backwards and forwards, a claim I can't make, but I happen upon such hereabout who have this kind of lore stored up!...and I do have some chops....so, curious, and needing a game to play really, I've played sports all my life.....I was in the sports store awhile back, and just picked up all the different balls and things, reminiscing!....I've taken up wow....hmmph...there are wow blogs. youTubes, wikis, the whole panoply....in their time, Muir and Dana were ahead of the everyone, and dont know, but somewhere in the melee, their counterparts are about....oh...two Tuesdays back, at Creek's End, at Last Light, Hawk, Redtail, flyover from Glacier towards the Falls....I had the newer camera at the ready, but just looked on for a bit too long, so no pic...and too in the Mail today, an important new piece of gear...a little adaptor that fits in the flash shoe--I can now do clips with one camera atop a second camera....tomorrowmorrow, I'll try this out!!

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Out and about at first Light...Raven always greets the morning outside the Cabin thenabout....paddled out to Bobcat Meadow...Trees all look okay...lots of Twigs and such on the Ground...continued out Lodgepole Point...High Water has eroded the the Slope by the Ponderosa...everthing looks a bit different!...Leaning Cedars okay...everthing is very dry...Little Bird peeping at Creek's End...and Ouzel plopped into the Merced thereabout...continued on the inside Loop...One Song Sparrow at Cottonwood Bend...Sparrow flew off just as I set up...'I might not take a pic, it's so quiet!', my thought...but when I reached the Cottonwoods at Ozone Beach, Doe being chased by Buck jumped into view...set up, and got distant hd clip..tried to follow back into the Woods along the Diversion Channel...lost sight, and Wind was beginning to blow, and cold!...and I was hungry...but, just as I was about to leave off, Buck and Doe jumped out from behind a Willow, stopped, surprised to see me...and while Deer considered, I set up...there's a ritual to Deers' romance...Doe pretends not to notice, and browses, while Buck does nothing but stand in place and look on with longing, and then, Buck starts up and goes toward Doe, and Doe, cheerfully, it seems, runs off, and the chase begins...I got a good hd clip, with the wind in background, of Buck making a few flirtations, but not the long wild chases I've seen, and have clips of, before...left off as fingers were freezing, which hurts!, and to Breakfast...clip for sometime...windy for awhile in the morning, dry, sunny blueblue, cold....saw Raccoon two nights ago by Cabin...and Buck crossing road yesterday morning...Pileated Woodpecker was somewhere about on the other side of the Merced this morning...lots of Ravens reported in Siberia by Apple Orchard...Ravens by the Cabin too...Blue Jay calls....I was trying to listen for Owl and all the Birds, but there's a terribly loud new nightime Shuttle that keeps coming around!....hmmph...it whines like a street cleaner...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Windy Day

The sand of the beach began to be cold to our bare feet; the frogs set up their croaking in the

marshes, and one solitary owl, from the end of the distant point, gave out his melancholy note,

mellowed by the distance.....

Two Years Before The Mast
Richard Henry Dana

I was looking for the passages in Two Years about the Santa Ana Winds...Dana describes them, and how Ships back then were blown out to Sea for hundreds of miles...anyway...

Here in the Valley it has been windy off and on, causing some consternation--oh..a gust just shook the Cedar--Roads closed off and on, Campo 4 evacuated, Cabin and Tents in Siberia too...tomorrowmorrow I'll walk about and looksee...sunnybluebluewindywindy, warm...hereabout, the Santa Ana Winds are called Mono Winds....

Reading Dana, I was reminded just how well Nineteenth Century writers wrote!!  And that might be first report of Owl in California...I'll have to start a new thoughtHobby, culling critter reports in early California literature, beginning with this one by John Muir....oh, bit above is from when Dana first arrives at Santa Barbara...those old ships were living things...

Muir Link:

Muir's Atlantic Monthy articles are in a book hereabout, I think, and will find it so I can put up some quotes from them...Muir is very quotable...