Sunday, July 31, 2011

Eagle Fire / Vallecito Hike - ABDSP

************ Update Aug 1st 2011 ************
According to CAL FIRE the Eagle fire is now 100% contained

The Eagle fire has burned more than 14,000 acres and spread into the Anza Borrego Desert State park canyons. On a recent trip to the desert I photographed some of the helicopters making water drops on the blaze. They were filling up from the Borrego Community water ponds. It was very interesting to watch, they were flying circles around Indinan Head Peak dropping water onto the fires in Palm Canyon and Henderson Canyon. They were moving very quickly, these guys were really good and busting some serious ass fighting the fire. It was amazing to watch.

You can see more photos of the helicopters in action and a few videos here

This is one video of a helicopter coming in to pickup water

You can get a sense of scale with this chopper dumping water in Palm Canyon - Eagle Fire 07-25-2011

This is the SDG&E SPL Tower helicopter helping out
Zoomed in on the SDGE tower chopper picking up water - Eagle Fire 07-25-2011
Zoomed in view of the pilot area of the SDGE tower chopper during a water pickup - Eagle Fire 07-25-2011

Two helicopters fill up at once, looked a little sketchy to me but I guess they know what they are doing
Two Choppers pickup water - Eagle Fire 07-25-2011

Sky Art sculptures near Henderson Canyon, you can see the smoke from the blaze in the background and the many trucks from the fire crew on stand by
Henderson Canyon - Eagle Fire 07-25-2011

On a hike out thru a very remote area of Vallecito I found a few pictographs, pottery sherds, morteros and a Bobcat watching me from up in a small cave. I also had a couple of coyotes dart out away from me while boulder hopping in a few areas. As usual for that area I saw a lot of large mountain lion scat.

You can see all of the pictures from Vallecito here

This Bobcat was watching me while I ate some lunch, this was in a very remote area of Vallecito
Ever get that feeling you are being watched? I was out in the middle of nowhere eating my lunch and I look over and see this bobcat fixated on me. He watched me for at least 20 minutes before I moved on. I did not see him move an inch, just stared at me.

This was a very interesting rock, it has the looks of possible carvings but is most likely a natural formation
Interesting Rock

I saw several large scats that looked like Century Plant pods and seeds
Century Plant Scat

These were pretty cool looking morteros

I was not sure what to make of these prints. I followed them for about a mile thru a wash until I had to turn onto the road. They were large, roundish and deep. Almost like a basketball was thrown down into the sand, my sunglasses are next to them for size comparison and you can see my foot prints to the left, very faint so you know these were made by something heavy footed.
Some really odd tracks. I have never seen tracks like this before. They were large and round. See my sunglasses next o them for scale. On the left you can see my foot prints, very faint and much smaller. I followed these for about 1 mile until I needed to turn onto the road.

A nice size mountain lion scat
Here kitty, kitty...

I found some interesting pictographs. Here are a couple with the originals and then with a Dstretch enhancement
Large Pictograph of a man and zig zag lines
Large Pictograph of a man and zig zag lines enhanced with Dstretch
Large Pictograph of a man and zig zag lines
Large figure man pictograph color enhanced with Dstretch

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