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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Part 4 - Our Hike Up the Lost Mine Trail

Our first day at the Chisos Mountain Lodge started out early. We took a short walk around a trail designed to give us a really good view of The Window. The sun had just come up high enough to shine right in Jan's eyes. We found out later that we missed a mountain lion moving across the trail towards The Window by about a half hour. We got to see a video of her though.

This Paisano, or Road Runner, was wandering around the parking lot as we got in the car to head to the trail. He seemed totally unafraid of humans, and went about catching his morning breakfast without breaking stride. I was told later that this lack of fear of humans is a characteristic of these beautiful birds.

The Mexican Jay above was in the parking lot of the trail. Searching for and catching a late breakfast was formost on its' mind. The blue of its' head and wings is like no other jay I have ever seen, a light pastel sky blue that is not like the "standard" blue jays around our house. When this jay flew off, I pointed the camera at it as best I could and just took shot after shot. The one above is the best of the lot.

We encountered our second Road Runner out on the trail, at about marker 6 or 7. We did not pick up a legend of the different markers, but I highly recommend that any hikers on the trail get one before going up. The hike would have been more interesting with one in hand!

Ocotillo, Fonquieria splendens

We met two hikers from Australia on the trek, and they were very friendly to us. The man in the photo above was visiting his friend, who had been in the US for some time working at a company in Austin. When he got up on the rock to get a better view, I couldn't resist taking this shot. It's one of my favorites.

These two photos were taken about half the way up the trail. I think the one on the right is the more interesting one. I can almost see a man's profile in the rock...

Some random shots as we reached the top of the trail. We were quite high up, and got a great view of the whole area. The pinon pine above left and the weed just cried out to be photographed. And flowers are always a treat to see and capture.

This photo was taken at the very end of the trail. If you look closely, you can see a young man on the left (about the mid point of the shot) taking a photo of a young man across the rock on the right. I think it gives a sense of the scale of the rock and a small part of what we enjoyed when we got there.

I hope you like these photos. I sure enjoyed taking them. I will be back to Big Bend in October for a longer stay and will surely have some great photos to show then.

This is the last post on Big Bend for now (I know I promised four episodes, sorry) because other photos are begging to be shown. But I will post the last episode later, once some more current things are done. Til then, thank you for visiting this humble 'blog.

Mike Z