Monday, July 30, 2012

Tuzigoot Pueblo

We stumbled upon this place, the Tuzigoot National Monument, mostly by accident. It lies in central Arizona's Verde Valley. The word Tuzigoot, is Apache for "crooked water." The dwelling is a three story, 110 room, Sinagua pueblo.  It was occupied for about 300 years, starting about 900 years ago.  It was excavated during the 1930s.  The pueblo was occupied for such a long period because of the permanence of a nearby river. I retract the first sentence. 

The visitor's center (no photo) houses an extensive collection of Sinagua artifacts. All of them were found on site, during the excavation. 

The ceiling is the only reconstruction done on the pueblo and is considered an exact representation of what was originally there. 

My last post was related to Jerome. It is located on the near slope of that mountain range in the background of this photo.

It really blows my mind to think of people living here that long ago in a totally organized and efficient manner. Although there were many native Americans living in the area, they  were totally alone. All of these rooms had roofs on them, but they didn't have any doors at all. The only way in and out of each room was through a trapdoor on the roof.

I know this post is different for me, but I hope you enjoyed the historical significance of it as much as I did...


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Jerome, Arizona - Ghost Town

The town of Jerome, Arizona is considered by many to be the largest ghost towns in the United States. Just like most other ghost towns, Jerome was once a thriving mining center. It was establish in 1883, primarily to house workers at the United Verde Mine, which produced over a billion dollars worth of silver and gold over the next 7 decades.  In the early 1900's, Jerome was known as "the wickedest town" in the west.  There are still some folks living in Jerome, but their livelihoods now come from either tourism or art. We only spent a short time there on our last trip to the Sedona area, so my photo taking was quick and dirty. Next time, I'll have a lot more time...

All of us here in the U.S. (and maybe in other places also), are familiar with these signs. This is the best one I've ever seen. I know that Psycadelic Mariachi is a band, but to me, it's just one more of the million of oddities that can be found in the desert.

"Open 24 Hours"
Really? I don't think this gas station has been open for 50 years. I don't remember seeing any other gas stations on the road to Jerome.

Jerome is also known as the most vertical town in the U.S. It runs right up the side of a mountain. EVERY masonry building is cracked and weathered (or destroyed). As you can see in the reflections, this one is in much better condition that the ones in the reflections.

I sure wouldn't be parking my vintage T-Bird in that particular spot.

Hotel Connor 2012

Hotel Connor 1899 (wikipedia)

Only the basement is left of this large building.

This is what most of the standing buildings look like. Still standing, but they are empty and have seen better days.

Lot's of old and crusty vehicles and equipment sitting around.

Just sitting around waiting for something to refuel. I'm not thinking it's going to happen anytime soon.

You just KNOW, I love this one. 

I have absolutely no idea what this thing is!

This mine, or part of it was operational on a limited basis until not very long ago. I'm pretty sure this HUGE earth mover, isn't EVER going to be used again. If you look to the right rear of the photo, you can see how deep this pit mine is. Where this truck is sitting, was once part of the mountain.

For reflections by other photographers go to Weekend Reflections sponsored by James.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Borrego Springs - Around Town

Just a small grouping of shots taken around the little town of Borrego Springs. It's a small place in the middle of a huge desert. Lot's of snow birds come to this area in the winter, but in the summer it is deadly hot and only fools and people who really want to be there are around. It's one of our favorite places and strangely enough one of the BEST little restaurants you'll ever eat at is there. 

This doesn't really keep to the theme, but hey, an artistic photo every now and then, never hurt anyone, right? Actually, this shot was taken just a little ways out of town, so it kinda qualifies.

A double decker bus!  I guess that if the London Bridge can now be found in the desert several hundred miles from here, why not an English double decker bus here?

Of course this (and every other) American desert is littered with awesome old pickup truck bones. Borrego Springs is no exception. This little beauty is worth some money.

Don't ask me! I only take the photos! I do know that it's either a 1949 or 1950 "shoebox" Ford.  i guess it's been sitting there for a while.  That grill and front bumper are worth quite a bit of money. Of course these days reproductions are readily available, but purist restorers want original parts like this.

No clue! I do know that about 50 years ago I saw a car fall off of a lift in the service bay to the right. It's been remodeled since then, but it's the same place. I guess I have been coming to the desert for along time.

One of the sculptures I didn't post before. I liked it because I got out of our jeep to take a photo of this one.

Cholla cactus.
  More spines per square inch than any other cactus in the desert. 

nature trail around the visitor center

Just because it was barren and pretty.



Monday, July 9, 2012

Desert Sightings Near Beaumont

embiggen to enhance your viewing pleasure.
These days, it seems like all train cars are covered with graffiti. However, this is the first time I've ever seen a landscape painted on one. That guy was good!

ENLARGE this one please!
Yet another abandoned truck. Although I really do love old trucks (and own one myself), what I like best about this photo is the little hints of yellow in the foreground brush.

Rain clouds, snow, wind powered electricity generators. All desert oddities.  Actually, the wind generators are very common in this area (close to Palm Springs), there are hundreds of them around.

I don't know about you, but when I see dark clouds in the desert, I try to get off the road and onto some high ground. Storms are not usually very friendly there.
Nothing spectacular in this post, but I thought there was something pretty interesting or funny in each of these photos. I hope you agree...



Monday, July 2, 2012

Silent Valley Animals

These pics were either taken there, or around the old dirt road that the ranger told us about in my last post. The following pics were taken on that day.

Of all things, a golden eagle. It first I thought it was a hawk. But this bird was larger than any predator type bird that I've ever seen. Somebody told me that there were golden eagles in the area that actually attacks hawks. I'm thinking this was one of them. I wish I kould have gotten a better photo.

Red-winged black bird. (First for me)

Red-tailed hawk

A female red-winged blackbird (another first)

Hooded Oriole (also a first for me)

I don't know what kind of snake it was, but it was REALLY long. We almost ran over it.

Dinner for the eagle and/or hawk

I know they are very common, but this guy was cute.

Spawn of Satan....
Well, we've been home for two weeks and it's time to go again. Next weekend we'll head on up to our favorite mountain ridge for a couple of weeks.