Friday, April 29, 2005


Fountain, Colorado is a small, quiet, laid back town south of Colorado Springs.  It looks pretty much like any other small town, USA, which is probably why it earned the distinction of being labeled The Millenium City of America by the New York Times for the year 2000, and then the honor of being one of the cities selected as All American Cities for 2002.  This is the new City Hall.

What would a town named Fountain be without a fountain?  The children play in this fountain in front of the city hall during the summer months. The winter cover was just removed this week, just in time for last night's snow.  Most of the snow had melted by noon.

Nothing really significant about this picture except that yes, those are snow clouds, and yes, that is snow on the mountain, and yes, this is April 29th!  Spring always comes a little later at this attitude.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005


Between the rain and my allergies I haven't had much opportunity this week to get out with my camera.  Sadly, when I went to the pond today I was greeted by the goose family with only 2 goslings in tow.  The missing baby possibly fell victim to one of the many predators that share the pond and surrounding woods.

Another sad discovery, this squirrel with a broken front leg (or arm, what ever you want to call it).  This was as close as it would let me get to it.  Had it let me get closer I probably would have tried to catch it and take it to the nature center where they could decide what, if anything, could be done for it.  I know I should let nature take care of itself, but sometimes its so hard.

I finally identified this little beauty, she's a female redwinged blackbird.  They don't even look like the same species.  Apparently she's a real looker though because she had 2 young blackbirds courting her.

I have no idea what kind of flowers these are other than 'pretty', and quite possibly one of the causes for my recent misery.  I suffer miserably through allergy season but I would never consider relocating to a more comfortable place.  This is my home and I love it, even if I'm allergic to it!

Sunday, April 24, 2005


Welcome to rural Colorado.  I really expected to see mountains and hills as far as one could see when I first arrived here, and was surprised by how flat the countryside appeared.  What I didn't realize was that these so called flatlands were on the mountain itself!


I love windmills, theres something so fairy-tale-ish, so Don Quixote-ish about them.  I'm not even really sure of their purpose other than to entertain dreamers like myself.  The grey sky and haze in the background of these pictures is due to some timely and much needed rain. You will rarely hear the residents here complain about rain.

Friday, April 22, 2005


This is a branch of the creek that I spend a lot of time at.  The beaver lodge is at the point in the top left, and I am standing near one of the two dams built by the beavers.  Today the water had a mirror like quality, but don't be fooled, the water is really a very dark, murky green color.

And look who came out to introduce their newest members of the family to me.  When I arrived they were just coming off the bank for a swimming lesson.  Even with me standing there the parents brought the goslings right over to my side of the creek.

I believe this little one is a swamp sparrow, but I could be wrong so if anyone knows for sure, please, by all means let me know.


Cripple Creek is claimed to be the world's greatest gold camp.  Ironically called Poverty Gulch at the time, gold was discovered in 1890 by Bob Womack.  While a few mines are still active today, most of the gold stuck now days is at the casinos.  Many of the stores and casinos occupy the original turn of the century buildings that have been remodeled to accomodate modern technology.


Walking down the mainstrip is like stepping back in time.  There are a few flashy signs but for the most part the business community has done an excellent job in retaining the historic atmosphere.

I always have so much fun walking through Cripple Creek.  One can't help but wonder what it must have been like during the town's peak.  Sometimes, and don't laugh.... I swear I can almost hear the whisper of those long ago voices, the laughter in the saloons, the faint sound of horses, and if I close my eyes and concentrate real hard I might even catch the elusive scent of... gold!


There are no big billboards blocking the scenery in town, what you will find are advertising murals painted on the sides of buildings, and these quaint sidewalk signs.

Thursday, April 21, 2005


Divide, Colorado in my eyes is one of the most beautiful places in the state.  It has it all, rich forests, rolling hills, steams and meadows, and sky as far as you can see.  It is picture perfect in the winter under a heavy coat of snow, but springtime in Divide is absolutely breathtaking!

Just my opinion, but you might not want to eat any fish from this pond!

This is the Molly Kathleen gold mind, which is still active today and offers tours so visitors can see what it was like to mine for gold back in the days of the gold rush.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005


When I first came to Colorado it was in the late fall and I was shocked by the dry, brown foothills of what I thought would be lush green mountains.  It didn't take me long to realize that there is beauty in all seasons.

Even when a plant drys out and goes to seed there is beauty.  And there is the promise of a new beginning in the spring.

Last year ended a 5 year drought for southern Colorado.  The creek behind this shady glade was dry, and the forest brittle.  These trees still bear the scars of a wild fire that scorched the forest.

Mother Nature is resilient and forgiving.  The earth has healed and celebrates the arrival of spring.

Your Tuesday Photo Shoot! Earth Day and Renewal

LITERACY: Monday Photo Shoot

Literacy to me is my legacy to my children. After reading the simple yet beautifully descriptive poetry in which Alfred Lord Tennyson could paint a picture in my imagination with mere words I discovered a new appreciation for reading and writing. This is the actual book I read at the age of 10 that introduced me to Tennyson and changed my whole perspective on the written word.  I'd like to think that it was given to me and that I didn't just 'keep it', but I honestly don't remember.  Its tattered and faded from years of young fingers hungrily eagerly turning the pages to read more.  My children have the same hunger.  A trip to the library is always a treat for all.


This catalog is printed at the back of the book.  Schools were encouraged to use books as prizes and incentives.  Earlier this year my daughter received a loaf of strudel as an incentive.  That was almost halarious!  She would have appreciated a book more.

Your Monday Photo Shoot: Get Literate!

Monday, April 18, 2005

BIRDS AT THE POND, April 18, 2005

Is it just me or is that mallard smiling?

Geese have a reputation for being mean and aggressive but so far all of the ones I have encountered have been very docile.  These two are on their way to the little island in the middle of the pond where they can rest safely during the night.



Fort Carson, the Mountain Post, is home to the 3rd BCT, 43rd ASG, 3rd ACR, 5th Armored Brigade, 13th Air Support Operations Squadron, and the 10th Special Forces Group.  I admit it... I am a flag fanatic.  This one flies over the Post Headquarters.

This is one of the two cannons posted outside the headquarters building.

There is also something about bronze statues that I just cannot resist.  This soldier guards the entrance to the headquarters.


Not all of the animals in Colorado are wild.  Llamas are popular here for their wool.  I've always thought that there was something very awkward about a llama's legs and feet, they just don't look right.

There's nothing special that I know about this house, I just found it very eye-appealing.

This wind cather was spinning so fast it looked like a solid wheel, but the camera was fast enough to freeze it in mid-spin.

Sunday, April 17, 2005


Mule deer are quite a bit larger than their eastern cousins the white tail deer.  Their ears are disproportionately large for their heads but I think it adds to their charm.

Wild turkey are plentiful here in southern Colorado.  This tom, who was running with a small flock of maybe 7 birds, did NOT appreciate my company and jumped off the ledge right behind him with the rest of the birds following.  I didn't know until I came to Colorado that turkeys, as large and as awkward as they are, are actually graceful flyers.

I have been trying for weeks to get a shot of a prairie dog but they just haven't been very cooperative.  Usually all I get is a shot of their little black-tipped tail as it disappears down the burrow.  Today I got lucky as this one waited until I had gotten this shot before sliding down the hole.

Shots I missed today... a roadrunner who was quite a bit faster than I was and a soaring eagle who couldn't be coaxed down from the clouds.  Maybe next time.


Today was spent exploring 'down range' on Fort Carson.  Along the way we came across a huge fallen cottonwood tree.  I don't know how to age a tree, but I'm sure this one had to be well over 100 years old.  It lay in the field like sunbleached dinosaur bones.  A closer look revealed that it was actually two giant trees intertwined, locked in a lovers embrace.

Rocky almost couldn't get up ontop of the fallen giant.  One wonders what could have caused such a massive tree to fall.


Steve stood by the fractured trunks to give a better idea of the immensity of the ancient trees.

Saturday, April 16, 2005


Another late afternoon photo excursion with my husband.  This time we stayed right in town, or at least within about 10 miles from the house.  My first picture of the day was of this cloud.  I call it a 'fluffy cloud', but my more intellectual son says its a 'cumulus cloud', which is just a scholar's way of saying 'fluffy cloud'.

Hawks are very common, even in my neighborhood.  This one is watching over a field for small rodents, possibly mice, chipmunks, and young rabbits or pairie dogs.  I don't think I will ever tire of watching the magnificient raptors.

Its spring turkey season in Colorado, but these turkeys seem to know that we aren't armed.  This is a flock of Rio Grande turkeys.  The large tom in the center is in full strut.  The young jakes around him are too immature and intimidated to challenge him for the favors of the hens.

Pronghorn antelope are plentiful out on the plains near my house.  This lone buck wasn't overly alarmed by my presence.  The pronghorn have big, beautiful eyes.... can you see his long eyelashes?

NOTE: to those who have inquired or wondered, no, I am not a professional photographer but I appreciate the compliment.  I am just very fortunate to live in a place full of photographic opportunity.  Most of my pictures are lucky shots.  For instance, today I shot 400 exposures, and maybe only 50 were worth keeping.  I'm just glad that I have a digital so I can virtually shoot as many pictures that I want, but only print out the best.  I'd be broke, and the owner of hundreds of lousy pictures if I were still doing this the old fashioned way with film!


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