I went for a walk in the bosque at sunset, and caught the pink on the Sandias — there was not a cloud in the sky. I headed north after sunset and ran into two coyotes on the trail. They perked up when they saw me, then high-tailed it in the opposite direction. Then I saw Virginia perched on a branch. It was nice to see Virginia, I hadn’t seen her in months.
4th of July evening 2019. I had fireworks to the left of me, a sliver moon to the right, and I was stuck in the middle, on the edge of the Rio Grande, water lapping at my toes, with beavers, badgers, porcupine, skunks, coyotes, Chupacabra and La Llorona all enjoying the show.
With it 100º F (37.8º C) at our house, we hopped in the Mazda Miata MX-5, put the top down and headed for the hills — well Sandia Crest at 11,000 feet (3352.8 meters) above sea level. The drive to the top was a blast as the MX-5 hugged the corners well above the posted speed limit. We could see the clouds swirling above us, and hear the birds singing with the top down, as rounded one hairpin turn after another on our way to the top. Once at the top of the Crest, the temperature was 55º F (12.8º C) with drizzling rain and cold wind. Quite a contrast from the sunny, hot valley below. We walked around on the mountain top and noticed there were lots of wild flowers blooming.
I wasn’t expecting Mr. pT. (Great Blue Heron Pterodactyl) at the beginning of our walk. I had my ISO set at 400, which is a little slow against dark trees at sunset. It’s one thing not to expect the Mr. pT., which I should know better, since I see him almost every night. But I really wasn’t expecting to see Ms pT., so imagine my surprise and excitement when Mr. pT. swooped down and flushed Ms pT. out of the clearwater ditch to do a pterodactyl tango on their way over the bosque to the rio Grande. Part of the challenge is to see if you can find Mr. pT. against the tangle of bare cottonwood branches in the first six photos; and then see if you can find Mr. pT. and Ms pT. in the 7th photo and the last photo.