"Just living is not enough... one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower." Hans Christian Andersen
Copious rains from November and December of last year are generating early crops of poppies here in southern Arizona.
What a difference a year can make...In regards to Sonoran Desert vegetation, last year was almost as desiccated as it was disappointing. The mighty saguaros were more laconic than iconic. All shriveled and sickly looking, they were mere dehydrated, anorexic shells when measured against "normal." There were no green patches of grass, few flowers, and the Brittle Bush...well, they looked brittle and dead. There was a pervasive aura of brownness such that we had to look to granite and sunsets to get our usual color-fix. Not so this year. It is as green as a gardeners thumb around these parts...and, right now, boondocked near Oro Valley in the foothills of the Catalina Mountains, it is snowing!
Thanks to a tip from Jim and Gayle, we now make a stopover at McDowell Park on our way to, and from, our winter playgrounds near Tucson. Whether a hiker or biker, the largesse of McDowell's trails are undeniable.
Here are a few photos from our trail ride to Granite Mountain with Chris, Gayle, and new friends, George and Tina...
mark and bobbie