United States of America · 43 Days · 52 Moments · August 2017

Ground Zero for the Total Eclipse of the Sun


20 September 2017

Casper Wyoming 21 August 2017 - This image is was taken when the moon completely covered the sun. This is the only time that protective glasses are not needed, and I had two and one-half minutes to get it correct.
The image displayed today was created by a new friend named Lissa. She was photographing the eclipse along side me in Casper WY on 21 Aug 2017 . She did a lovely job of marrying the the individual photos into one striking image.
A trip to Fossil Butte National Monument located in Wyoming was quite a treat. The monument resides next to the actual location in which the Green River formation resides.

18 September 2017

Ken and Miss M. On the hiking trail in Arkansas.

14 September 2017

Does anyone remember this plane crash which occurred on a 10,000 foot mountain peak in the Medicine Bow National Forest located in Wyoming?
We climbed our last 10,000 foot plus peak today, and began our trek east toward home. At the apex of the mountain sleet rained down, but not before we were able to hike and photograph one more time. We decided to drive across Wyoming and Nebraska, through Kansas and Missouri to visit our friends in Springfield Missouri.

13 September 2017

This image is an example of being in the right place at the right time. We were having dinner, and I saw the light change dramatically. I hopped up from my chair and took this image. The lovely scene disappeared within 90 seconds. Somewhere in Wyoming.

12 September 2017

We found the perfect camping spot for our only night in Idaho on the St. Charles Creek. There are only 6 sites in the campground and we are the only campers here. Our chairs are about 18 feet from the melodious Creek.

11 September 2017

Hiking in the Tetons National Park. Visited Mormon Row and photographed the famous barn.

10 September 2017

A bee on a purple thistle, campfire in a can, an assortment of interesting vehicles, and a tiny teardrop trailer. The kitty spent the day in the teardrop while his family toured the Tetons. Rest assured Miss M. the kitty had plenty of fresh air, and seemed quite content. And finally a giant puff ball about to spread its seeds with the first strong breeze.

9 September 2017

Yellowstone waiting for the Elks to show up for the evening. Photographed two female later that night.

7 September 2017

Yellowstone Canyon from a distance, and at the brink of the falls.

5 September 2017

The variety of images posted today were taken in Yellowstone National Park.

4 September 2017

We are headed back to Yellowstone and the crowds should be thinned out since the Labor Day weekend is over. (Update: the crowds continued to be abundant) We left our campground this morning by way of the WY Grand Canyon. Native Wyomians told us is was beautiful, but I would call it spectacular! The geologist in me had to stop and photography signs describing the age and name of the formation of a particular rock layer. Names such as Pre-Cambrian Gneiss, Pennsylvania, and Jurassic were seen posted along the drive through the canyon. Closeup shots revealed intricate designs. I plan to research more WY geological when I have time. 😊

2 September 2017

The first image is our red 0mnia oven that I have fallen in love with. Last evening we roasted yellow potatoes and broccoli with a little oil, butter and seasonings. The broccoli had a slight smoky grilled taste, and it was delicious. Of course I know you will recognize a golden rod but I will have to do my homework for the cup shaped purple flower's name. I've taken a picture of our campground sign so that we can return here next year.
I hope you enjoy the images for today. The first image is our campfire that Ken work extremely hard to set up, and it was perfection. The next day we took a hike up the mountain and photographed a couple of flowers, watched the rainbow trout flounce in a pond, an unknown purple flower, a dandelion going to seed and a beautiful golden rod. Ken even found some wild raspberries and he proceeded to eat all of them so there is nothing left for the bears. Dinner preparations including moving our small metal table close to the creek while I prepared our meal. We have the best campsite in the whole park.

1 September 2017

Today was a relaxing day with two easy hikes totaling almost 11,000 steps. It's Labor Day weekend and we are staying put in our beautiful campsite next to a springfed creek. The name of the creek is Clear Creek and only reminds me of the flood in Houston and Clear Creek that is located close to Nassau Bay. And finally Ken was enjoying sitting on a stump near a rainbow fish stocked pond. And if anyone is curious about the round shiny object in the Creek, it's Ken's Dr. Pepper cooling in the 53 degree spring fed water.

30 August 2017

We had leftover rotisserie chicken for dinner tonight with a link of hickory beef sausage, steamed broccoli, buttered thyme potatoes reheated in my Omnia oven on my propane camp stove. And the best part is a remote temperature thermometer that notified me when the food reached the correct temperature by signaling me via a remote beeper in my pocket. Wow!! I baked a cake from scratch today in my omnia oven. It took 40 minutes, it was beautiful and tasted wonderful. It was so easy I can't believe it. I have also solved the problem of a too small refrigerator in my RV. I have a yeti cooler and realized that many items such as fruit, cabbage, Broccoli, chocolate candy don't need a cold refrigerator to keep them fresh. So every morning I place a Ziploc bag with one tray of ice cubes on top of my food items in the yeti cooler, and they stay cool and fresh all day. I have been doing this for two weeks now and have had no problems with anything spoiling.
Here's a couple of photos showing our front yard and backyard after the 1000 year flood of 2017. We're high and dry as you can see from the trash line in the front yard. Our son and grandson came out to check the inside of the house and all was well there too. They were checking the bluebell ice cream after our electricity was shut off for a time, and said it was a little icy. I'm relieved that we made it through this terrible rain event, and my heart aches for the people of Houston for the loss of their homes and businesses.
Ken and I hiked to the top of a mountain today in Wyoming to get cell phone coverage and to enjoy the view.
Scenes from our hike today.

29 August 2017

Some interesting photos that we took on a "short" afternoon hike. A couple of mushroom collages, picturesque evergreen trees against the canyon walls, the creek we are camped upon, a fly on a purple flower, a butterfly and an old fence.

28 August 2017

We are in Wyoming camping in a national Forest. We're camping directly on this beautiful mountain creek at 7400 feet elevation. We took a walk this morning and the images displayed are some of our favorite thing for today.

26 August 2017

We are ⛺️ing on Georgetown Lake in Montana in a National Forest ⛺️ground. We had a lovely dinner of chicken, bacon and rice cooked in the Instant Pot along with homemade slaw. Update: We departed Montana rather quickly because they were experiencing wildfires. The entire state was smoky.
Wheat Montana - Cinnamon rolls as big as your face. Sorry we don't have a picture. We ate most of it before I thought of photographing it, so all you get is a picture of the store.

25 August 2017

Don't leave home without it! Some RV travelers take a lot and some RV owners take a little. This image was taken in Yellowstone National Park.
The theme today is wildflowers. All of these images were taken at one pull off stop in Yellowstone National Park.

24 August 2017

This post is for my daughter and all dog lovers everywhere. A young man on a motorcycle with a sidecar taking his best friend on a trip to Yellowstone.
We are in Yellowstone (this is the first visit) enjoying Old Faithful and the thermal pools.
The bison believe they own the road, and I think they are correct.

23 August 2017

Cody wins The National Medal of honor for bravery.
The Cody Museum is celebrating 100 years.
The chuckwagon – How did cowboys feed themselves in the 1800s. A cowboy chef was manning the chuckwagon cooking cowboy beans and sourdough biscuits. We were able to ask a lot of questions to our cowboy chef, take pictures and sample his beans and biscuits. He even made boiled coffee with loose grounds and served that too. It was hearty and delicious. If you ever find yourself camping and have forgotten your coffee filters, here's a tip for you. Boil the water, put in the coffee grounds, let Big coffee steep a while. Then to settle the grounds to the bottom of the pot, simply add a little cold water to the pot. I tasted no loose grounds and the coffee was rich, hot and delicious. Coffee beans, bacon, seasoning Yum.

22 August 2017

They Indian section was outstanding.
I suspect that this American Bald Eagle was injured and had to be kept captive in this cage at the Cody Museum. One can't help but to be sad that he is not soaring free.
Guns, guns and more guns🤠🤠🤠 Cody museum firearm collection. This shows a tiny piece of the guns that they have on display. The very large green machine is a loader for those not familiar with guns. You just won't believe how many old guns they have.

21 August 2017

The eclipse was spectacular. We were located just south of Casper Wyoming, on the roadside under several cottonwood tree. Irrigated alfalfa crops were on both sides of the road. We located ourselves in the zone of total darkness. I have an image of total darkness, but will have to post at a later date as it is on my cf card and I need wifi to post it.

19 August 2017

Could you run 100 miles at an elevation of 10,000 feet to 12,600 feet and complete the run in 30 hours? I didn't think so. Well that's what hundreds of men and women do every year in Leadville Colorado. Three of Mike's buddies were on the starting line on a cold Saturday morning at 4:00 AM to attempt the herculean task. Mike and Christopher were crewing the group and were awake and hustling from one point to another during the 30 hour run. After the 50 mile point, the runners are allowed a pacer. At this point in the race Shane was the only man left standing Mike paced the first and last stretch and was privileged to cross the finish line with his buddy Shane. Donna, having completed the Leadville several times, paced Shane all night. Crazy you say!! That's what lots of other folks say too. Our other 2 guys made a valiant effort, and my hat is off to both of them. The photos show the start in complete darkness, Ken waiting to encourage the runners to the finish line.

17 August 2017

The hiking app said the hike was an easy 4.3 round trip to an alpine lake. I should know by now that the words alpine Lake means that the hike is almost to the continental divide. In other words at least 11,000 feet elevation. We parked at the trailhead and set out. A short distance after crossing a bridge over a fast running mountain stream our trail veered to the right and the Colorado trail took a left. The elevation gain was nearing 900 feet with the last part of the trail being steep and rocky. Ken decided to turnaround about 2/3 of the way up. I hated to give up so I forged ahead. I was tired and contemplated turning around several times, but received encouraging words from those that were descending the mountain. I finally arrived at the alpine lake and it was beautiful as my images show. The hike was worth it, however that was a difficult hike for me. But then again I'm not 30 years old anymore 🤠.

16 August 2017

We took our first hike this afternoon, about 4 miles, along the banks of Turquoise Lake. This hike would probably be labeled as moderate, but to us it was somewhat harder. The large rocks that you will see are remains of the ice age. As the ice moved through the mountains, large pieces of rock were ripped away. As the ice retreated, the boulders, some the size of houses, would drop to the ground and remain there for us to see today. The shinny red berry is a wild rose hip. Ken is napping and I am making chili in my Instant Pot. Tomorrow we are going to try a new hike which will be entirely different from today's. the hike should be less strenuous and there will be wildflowers, mountain lakes and streams. PS: The hike was not easier, but we survived.

15 August 2017

We are in Leadville CO and it 10,000 feet elevation. We felt ready for our first easy hike. Come along with us and see what We found along the 3 mile trail.

13 August 2017

Dinner at the Twin Lake Inn to celebrate our 55th wedding Anniversary. The image shows 3 of the guys that finished the Leadville 100 Mile Mountain bike race. Bjorn, not shown, finished the race in record time. One hundred miles in 12 hours or less. The ride starts at 10,000 ft. elevation with the turnaround point 12,500 feet. The older gentleman and his wife are local celebrities in Leadville. He came up with the Leadville 100 ride and probably saved the town. There are now events all summer including a 50 mile bike ride, a 50 and 100 mile run.
We have setup camp at Baby Doe, a National Forest Park campground in Leadville CO. The first image is of Turquoise Lake, and the second photo shows water that is so pure and clean that rocks are clearly visible through several inches of water.
Shirley Becker has relatives near Harrisburg VA. They live in Elkton VA 8 miles east of Harrisonburg. As I understood, Shirley's relatives have a roadside vegetable market 3 miles north of Elkton. It is located at (Bear Lithia Springs). Not sure of the spelling, but it's probably easy to find. My VA relatives might want to check out the market. While looking at the VA map, I saw a red dot indicating the East Mennonite University, which might indicate a large group of Mennonites in that area.

11 August 2017

The Great Sand Dunes National Park located in southern Colorado is an unexpected surprise. We usually stop here for one night on our way to Leadville.

10 August 2017

Continuing - We toured the farm grounds around the house admiring their handy work. Shirley said that her husband was a tinkerer, and it showed. He had just redone the garden fence with interesting saved posts, a yard feature containing a manure spreader and a ball of 100 year old barbed wire from a famous Texas ranch. Then she took us into the "shed", (More like a giant barn) and showed us the train her husband made from barrels that he built for their 10 grandchildren. Also, notice the large blue grain trailer in the shed. After the mini tour we exchanged addresses and phone numbers. She told about New Mexico's Red River recreation campgrounds. So we changed our plans and headed to the Red River for 1 night. We could have stayed there all day but reluctantly departed. What a special treat that was. It was probably the highlight of our trip. Stay tuned for one more interesting note from Shirley.
Continuing - My first thought was what will her husband say when strangers park in the driveway. Their home and grounds were immaculate and surprisingly green because of the abundant and unusual rain in the panhandle this summer. As we waited for her return, I felt something wet nudge my hand and lean against my leg. It was their guard dog. Had this dog been barking, I would've jumped back into the RV. Shirley arrived a few minutes later. During our get acquainted time she said that her husband was in Michigan for a church meeting. I was dumbfounded that she would invite strangers to her farm when she was alone. Prior to this, I noticed a small bonnet on her head. So I assumed Shirley to be Amish or Mennonite. The reason for the bonnet is that the Bible says a woman must worship with her head covered and in the Amish and Mennonite faith one should be prepared to pray and worship at anytime. Shirley Becker is a Mennonite. What a lovely, sweet lady. Story to continue.
Our adventure started about 10 minutes after we left Thompson overnight campground in the Texas Panhandle. Last year we discovered a short cut to Texline Texas through the small family farms which dot the area. The New Mexico border is just on the other side of Texline. Once a farm boy always a farm boy. Ken wanted to see the corn and wheat crops. We found a beautiful corn field next to the road, and stop to photograph. About that time a woman backed out of her driveway next to where we were stopped. She slowed down and rolled her window down. I thought she might be a little wary of the strangers looking at her corn, so I greeted her and told her we were photographing her beautiful corn. She seemed genuinely pleased. Then she said, "I'm just going over to a neighbor's home for a few minutes, so you're welcome to see our farm". I'll be right back. We were delighted to take her up on it, and drove down the driveway between tall tasseling corn and parked. (To be continued)

9 August 2017

Our favorite Panhandle, first night camping stop. The only problem with this stop is that it's over 700 miles from Houston. Thompson picnic area is located in the Rita Blanca National Grass Land, and it's a free overnight stop. There was one another class C RV camping with us. This is the fourth time we've stopped here, and there has been a storm brewing every time. During the night we experienced close thunder, lightning and rain. One of the images show the beginning of a rainbow, however it does not develop any further.
Texas traveler's rest stops are interesting places. The theme of this stop was wagon and train transportation of early Texas, and a critter safety warning.
West Texas agriculture and windmills. About 20% of Texas electricity is generated by wind.
4:00 AM - Heading north on the Gulf Freeway for our annual get-away in Colorado. There will be a special treat this summer!! A total eclipse of the sun on the 21st of August. We plan to be on the path of totality.