Monday, October 8, 2018

Riding to the Library

Riding on the sidewalks
When I was living on my sailboat in San Pedro I used the Los Angeles County Library then when I started using Kindle I loaded books from Amazon FREE using my library card and the library web site. The staff there were always nice and helpful but the outside was kinda scary because of the always present homeless. Same with the Von's a few blocks away.
Gravel driveway to County Road
I now have a Yavapai Library Card. The main library is located in Sedona. Although I have a Sedona mailing address I am not close to the land of traffic signals and use the Branch located in the Village of Oak Creek (no traffic signals).
Lee Mountain Road

Lee Mountain Road is next to Lee Mountain which kinda makes sense. This road has its ups and downs and several curves as it heads to Jacks Canyon Road and the main highway.
The highway is lined with wide sidewalks and benches.

Lee Mountain in the distance at 6250

I ride on the sidewalk here as at times as there is traffic here.
leaving library

You can not ride on the sidewalk in San Pedro unless you can bunny hop the trash and passed out sleeping there. I don't mean to knock what is the truth.
Branch Library

returning to off-road mode

Friday, October 5, 2018

Confused Traveler

The move from San Pedro where my sailboat is to Arizona where my daughter lives started before sunrise as I hoped to miss some of the Los Angeles traffic.

The plan didn't work as I had a hell of time putting my MTB on the overhead rack because all the adjustments were frozen from not using them.
I left the harbor and headed north on the 110 Freeway then Joined the start of the 91 going east.That is when I became confused as I kept thinking I was on the 22. I used to have customers on the 91 and new the route rather well but that was not helping me any.
Traffic was at a standstill and the two dogs were not happy either. Stop and go, stop and go. It wasn't till I was past Riverside that I was able to speed up. Then we needed gas and I hit a Circle K and after buying ice I was greeted by a crappy smell in the car as the little dog got sick. 
Courthouse Butte
The ride was hot and my A/C doesn't work. At the rest stops in Arizona the dogs didn't like the hot pavement and quickly return to the Nissan. When we hit the capital in was rush hour and more stop and go. After we headed north on 17 the traffic stopped.
I stopped at a Big Mac to get directions and smashed the glass on my crap phone.
Lee Mountain
My daughter texted me directions and I took the wrong turn and needed more help. She came and got me and she led me to her place. By then it was dark and they don't have any street lights. So she was my guiding light in her white SUV.
Sunset with Nikon D90 on tripod

Not all the landscapes here are captioned as various names exist'

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Raining in Arizona

Made the 504 mile drive from San Pedro to the Village of Oak Creek in Arizona.
The dogs and I live in a ranch house across from my daughter. We are in the mountains at 4250 feet and across from Lee Mountain at 6250.
My German Shepherd loves the place as he can roam around and he loves the creek below the house when it is dry. The rain came through and the creek had water in it but the dog is not fond of it.
I can ride my mountain bike in the creek when it is dry. Always thought of Arizona as being dry, hot desert but here close to Sedona it is not. Warm in the 80 and 90 but not triple digit.
There are several things we don't have here that was common place in San Pedro. My morning is not greeted with dumpster divers or homeless people wandering around the marina parking lot. The streets and bike pathways are not filled with broken glass, roofing nails and beer cans. No graffiti yet. Several bicycle shops in the village.
One problem is the goatheads and flat tires. 

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Water Birds of California

Refuses to look at camera

Yellow tail
 After starting my bird watching adventure I went to my local library (LAPL) and got several bird books. Then I explored the pages of E-Bay and bought two books,  Water Birds of California and to my surprise Osprey's were not included which I thought was quite strange.
Sharp beak

The Osprey is a large fish-eating hawk. It is the only hawk that dives into the water.

I have never seen once fishing by my sailboat but the Pelicans and Terns dive into the water bill first and the Herons that I see fish from the boat docks stabbing their prey but the Osprey have evolved extraordinary adaptations helping them become expert fish eaters. Starting with the feet, osprey talons are extremely long and sharp and combined with specialized scales on the toes, the osprey can easily grab and hold on to prey. One of these talon-clad toes is also reversible, this means that instead of having three forward pointing toes and one back, ospreys can point two forward and two back, this creates a powerful grip helping to prevent prey getting away.
Night photos

My first encounter with an Osprey was when one decided to roost on my Mast Head causing serious damage to the wind vane. At that time across the water from my boat there was a six pack fishing boat named Osprey. 
I had to go up the mast several times to try and fix the vane. Finally after several hikes up the mast in my bosun chair I finally left the vane a little crooked. Then a few years later my neighbor on a Catalina 36 decided to fly her spinnaker in the afternoon when the wind roars down the hill from the Fort above and her sheets came lost and the wild sail almost took down my mast. She had it repaired and now my mast head weather vane is sprayed with anti-osprey pepper spray. (lol)

Having watched the Osprey for several weeks lately I know that they can be quite messy. Blue Herons leave a trail of white guano spread out over an area (most likely a Mustang parked in the parking lot) but Ospreys don't swallow their prey whole like other sea birds and tear the flesh from the prey and eat in  a very delicate fashion much like in a sushi bar. They also don't eat the entails of their catch and simply leave them on the boat owners boat or dock or maybe an adjacent boat. 
The amount of bait in the harbor here varies and so do the sea birds that feed on the prey here. 

In the past I had read that Audubon was not a fan of the Bald Eagle because the eagle would steal from the Osprey and should have never been given the status of the national bird. 

Ospreys are every where 

A unique thing about ospreys is that they are a family of one. That's all, one species worldwide. Evidently ospreys got it right the first time and evolution didn't need to make changes along the way. That's pretty unusual when you think about it. South America alone has over 300 different species of hummingbirds, making up dozens of shapes, colors and sizes, but the entire world has only one osprey. There are no "great ospreys" living in the Alps or "snob-nosed" ospreys living on the beach in Malibu.
Loose feather
The Osprey is cosmopolitan and is also know in fancy talk as Pandion haliaetus