During one of our late October trips to Lake Pueblo I could see the Junkins fire still burning on the slopes of the Wet Mountians a few miles west of the park. It flared up pretty good one afternoon. I didn't see any slurry bombers working it but with binoculars I could see the flash of helicopter rotors as they did bucket drops on the hot spots. The tankers had been flying in days previous. They worked out of the Jeffco airport near the house. I heard and saw them taking off and landing all during the day for several days. One big C-130, an old Neptune piston with jet assist, and a small four engine jet tanker I had never seen before.
Early November was very very warm and sunny, so Rocky and I took off to look for the super moon down at Lake Pueblo. We saw the usual suspects of canyon towhees, curved bill thrashers, and scaled quail. The later drove Rocky nuts. They would march into camp and then when they discovered Rocky they took off running enticing Rocky to chase them, but that's not permitted. He finally became content to just watch them. We sat by the campfire waiting for the super moon to rise in the east. Man that thing was bright! Lit up the landscape most of the night, while owls hooted in the trees.
Also during that November warm spell we had a great horned owl land in the neighbors tree one afternoon. He posed for pics for all the neighbors.
The last couple of days we've had an immature bald eagle hanging out down at Lake Arbor. We saw him two days straight either out on the ice eating some fish and a dead goose, or sitting on a perch in a cottonwood that over hangs the lake. He was gone today. I wonder if it was a wintering eagle or offspring of the breeding pair over at Standley Lake not far from here. I know I saw two eaglets in their nest in the spring.
We're into deep winter now. Days are short and while I'm anxious to get out and camp, those long cold nights are not very appealing even though we stay nice and toasty warm in the camper. I just need some good sun and a good meal in the dutch oven.
|Historical marker for the Pole Creek Pony Express station near Sidney, Nebraska.|
|Waves of migrating sandhill cranes above North Sterling Reservoir State Park.|
|More cranes at even higher altitude.|
|Union Pacific #844 being serviced at Lodge Pole, Nebraska.|
|The Junkins fire was still burning on one of our early fall trips down to Lake Pueblo. I could see helicopters doing bucket drops when the fire blew up in the afternoon.|
|The curved bill thrashers always visit camp down at Lake Pueblo. If I leave the camper door open by accident they will even go inside looking for a goody.|
|Another usual suspect down at Lake Pueblo are the scaled quail.|
|View from camp on the super moon trip to Lake Pueblo.|
|The super moon over Lake Pueblo.|
|You don't see a lot of prairie dogs down at Lake Pueblo anymore, but every now and then you find one.|
|Connie and Rocky on a winter's day walk around Lake Arbor looking for the eagle.|
|Immature bald eagle at Lake Arbor in Dec. 2016.|
|The eagle had just finished eating a fish it had snatched away from a gull.|
|The Lake Arbor eagle again.|
|We hear owls hooting in the neighborhood every now and then. This one spent an afternoon trying to snooze in the neighbors big maple tree. He was quite a hit with all the neighbors.|
|Huge flocks of white pelicans at North Sterling Res. in late Oct.|