Friday, November 29, 2019

Death Valley Trip Report November 2019

Gary and I spent about 9 days roaming around Death Valley the week before Thanksgiving, no real plan other than hike around in the desert a bit. Drove out via Trona and hit up Telescope Peak the first day. After that we just kinda picked some locations each night looking at the map. Rogers Peak radio towers, Charcoal Kilns, Jayhawker Cyn, Greene-Denner-Drake Mill Site, Greenwater, Saratoga Springs, Crystal Camp, Skidoo Mill Site, Owlhead Mtns and a few more along the way. I really like the whole Greenwater Valley area and the Saratoga Springs / Crystal Camp area has amazing colors, I totally recommend the Owlhead Mtns area. The Skidoo Mill Site was very cool also but you need to spend some time hiking around to find everything. We got perfect weather and went home just before the big storm rolled in.

I am losing energy these days to write up long trip reports so am just gonna post up a few pics here and you can see more of the trip photos here.

These are all B/W film using a very contrasty Rollie Retro 80s film, I kinda like it personally. Developed with Rodinal. Shot with an Olympus OM-4 and a 30-105mm Zuiko lens.

My last Trip Report for Death Valley was back in 2010, you can read that long trip report here.

Funeral Peak early morning
Funeral Peak

Saratoga Springs Mill Site, this was a great place to hike around for half a day
Saratoga Springs Mill Site

Owl Dry Lake, we found several 50 caliber and 20mm casings and the machine gun "belt" clips out on the dry lake.
Owl Dry Lake

Black Magic Mine is another great place to explore, here is Gary looking out towards Owl Dry Lake from one of the viewpoints
Black Magic Mine Viewpoint

Greenwater Valley early morning
Greenwater Valley

The feral burros have really taken over many areas of the park and surrounding BLM lands. They have a whole network of deep rutted paths all over out there.

If you like these photos, you can see the rest of them from our trip here

I may add color photos also if the mood strikes me.

Total mylar balloons this trip: 5 (color photos on my phone)


Sunday, October 20, 2019

Earthquake & Mason Valley Days

Took a few days off from work and did some day hiking with Gary. We hit up Pinyon Mtn and Grapevine Mtn VABM's. We also spent a day hiking around Cottonwood Canyon.

B/W photos are from an Olympus OM-4 with Rollie Retros 80s film developed in Rodinal.

View of Granite Mountain from Pinyon Mountain

Gary reading the Pinyon Mountain register

Looking towards Borrego Springs

Sunset at our campsite off Pinyon Mtn Road

Here is the GPS track for the hike

Grapevine Mtn VABM

GPS track for the Grapevine hike

Found this rattlesnake dead, only signs of trauma was a smashed head...recent. I would half speculate someone or something smashed his head and left him for dead....sad.

There are several dry falls going up the drainage we took, all passible with a little effort. Here is Gary on the last one near the top

The Grapevine Mtn register is still there, over to the right of Gary in the picture under some rocks

Bitter Creek Spring bathtub

Gary at the top

Cottonwood Canyon is an interesting place and worthy of a day of exploring. Purchase a day parking permit at the Butterfield store for $5 and you can park on their property and hike in.

Water Tanker wheel, spokes are made of wood

There are many old cattle troughs out in Cottonwood Cyn

Several beautiful cottonwood tree patches are in the canyon. They are very peaceful to sit under and just listen to the wind whip thru their leaves...hard to leave those cottonwood trees.
Cottonwood Trees

A couple of water tankers we found

An old stone flume in one of the drainages

This guy had an upset tummy

I spent an extra night out in the desert and camped out near the Shake VABM

View from the Shake VABM

The Shake resgister does not see a whole lot of visitors

Total Mylar Baloons this trip - 9


Sunday, July 15, 2018

ABDSP Bighorn Sheep Count 2018

I thought I would post up a few pics from the BHS count this last July 4th weekend. All in all it was a good count year, numbers of sheep are stable. I don't carry my 600mm lens anymore, instead I just prop a trail camera up near the spring when the sheep are gone and let it do all the work.

Total Mylar balloons this trip - 3