I am so very lucky to live in such a beautiful area `the Colorado Rockies
once beautiful tree
had lived many seasons
beauty in its death
Less than a mile from my house, our first stop on Tuesday morning on the drive through the Big Thompson Canyon, toward Rocky Mountain National Park, was the trailhead leading to one of Loveland’s gorgeous open space areas.
This area is called the Devil’s Backbone. The area gets it’s name from the unique rock formations called Flatirons. It is believed that the first settlers to this area arrived in 1858 creating farming settlements around the Devil’s Backbone and the Big Thompson River. Flatirons were given their name by these pioneer women, because the flat, jetted peaks reminded them of their metal irons. Not sure how these Flatirons were named The Devil’s Backbone.
The Devil’s Backbone Open Space area consists of 2,198 acres and lies in a beautiful valley just west of Loveland. As you hike, bike, bird, eat a picnic lunch or just sit taking in the view, you can’t help being overwhelmed by the areas serene beauty. I can’t wait to hike this area and to capture both a sunset and sunrise photo.
Yesterday, as we were driving through the Big Thompson Canyon, west of Loveland, Colorado, heading up to Rocky Mountain National Park these sheep could be seen from the road.
We stopped to photograph them, which was a first for me. Two ewes were along side the road and the other ewe was up the canyon wall about thirty feet.
Bighorn sheep are named for the large, curved horns borne by the rams (males). Ewes (females) also have horns, but they are shorter with less curvature. They range in color from light brown to grayish or dark, chocolate brown, with a white rump and lining on the backs of all four legs. (as described on the wikipedia web-site).
These images are of Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep; they are large, with males occasionally exceeding 500 pounds and females exceeding 200 pounds.
The Big Thompson Canyon is beautiful and rugged. I hope these images give you a feel of how the canyon looks during the summer. With all of our rain this spring and summer the lush grasses and other vegetation are plentiful. Good for them, good for us!
The morning started out cool and beautiful with white puffy clouds floating like mysterious shapes in the azure sky. The stillness and quiet enhancing the allure to get out. So I got out and drove up to Rocky Mountain National Park to take a few photos. I spotted these wildflowers, growing among the trees, just off a trail.
seed, rain and light
entice many colors, so bright
purple, pink delight
wildflower in white
beauty growing in the sun
leaves a happy thought
yellow and orange
smiling swaying with the breeze
its sunny side up
nature leaves its mark
patterns display happenings
scared old aspen tree
I tried to find the names of these wildflowers, but didn’t have any luck. If you know what they are, please let me know.
Additional photos from Rocky to share tomorrow.
Exploring Rocky Mountain National Park is always enjoyable; however when you are showing friends around that have never seen this beautiful national park before, it is even more fun.
Friends from Louisiana were visiting us and we drove up to Rocky to spend the day. I can remember seeing Rocky for the first time about 27 years ago when we moved from Louisiana to Colorado.
As most people do, I think our Louisiana friends fell in love with this Colorado national park, so much so, they just might be back for another visit. I hope so!
Seeing a place so gorgeous, for the first time, is a memory I think we all hold dear and one we usually never forget.
A lovely day today in northern Colorado! The second snow storm has finally stopped, leaving an accumulation of five inches or so. It is beautiful and will soon disappear.
The warmer mid-day temperatures begin to melt the snow laying on the broad branches of the Blue Spruce, Austrian pines and other trees in my yard. The melting snow along with lower afternoon temperatures creates icicles that hang from the tips of the tree branches. It appears as if someone decided to decorate the trees with ornaments. I don’t recall seeing such an occurrence – nature has created a delightful site!
I continue to place bird seed out for the birds. Their frantic searching for food is evidence that these early spring snow storms and freezing temperatures have caught them off guard. The American Robins seem to have moved on, possibly because they have eaten all the berries in my juniper trees! The 30+ Dark-eyed Juncos are still here enjoying the full bird feeders.
Other visitors to the feeders have included: Chipping Sparrows, White-crowned Sparrows, Spotted Towhees, Townsend’s Solitaires, Black-capped Chickadees, Scrub-Jays, Morning Doves and Ring-necked Doves.
A simple pastime – gazing out the windows of the house, observing the wonders of nature, leaves moments of joy.