Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Getting Sprayed by a Tiger

Well, I never thought I would have that for a post title! But let me start at the beginning...

The WINs took an outing to Out of Africa, an animal park in Camp Verde, AZ. This place is a little different from your average zoo. Most of the animals have been rescued in one way or another, and are pretty used to people. They also have a lot of space.

We started off on a safari tour through the large area that you can't walk through. We were each given a piece of green stuff to feed to one of the giraffes. He politely worked his way down the side of the vehicle.

Finally it was my turn. WOW!

I think he liked it!

After he gave our tour guide a kiss, we moved on. At least he didn't use his 20-inch long tongue...

There were lots of other animals in the same large enclosure, and they get along well together. There were two baby zebras. Did you know babies are brown and white instead of black and white?

The Oryx looks like he has a butterfly on his face.

This guy needs a better toupee.

Here our guide is showing us that an ostrich will eat anything, by offering up her watch. She deserves a big tip!

After our safari, we went on a tram tour through the part of the park where you can walk, while our guide fed some of the animals, including this White Tiger -

And these cute little Lemurs.

Some of the animals are paired as they never would be in the wild. This lioness was raised with this white tiger, and they are the best of friends.

The Tiger Splash show is the best of the shows. The tiger got in the water as soon as he got there - it was a hot day.

But the goal of the show is to get the tiger to play and make a big splash in the pool. Unfortunately, he was already cooled off, and more interested in just playing.

They did everything they could to get to tiger to chase them into the pool, and it finally worked at the end when they brought out his favorite toy - a size 13 men's shoe. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of that.

Now for the highlight! After the show we walked around, and I got to walking with this friendly tiger....

Phil was behind me, when all of a sudden, the tiger turned, and LOOK OUT!!! Phil got sprayed!

In case you missed it, here's a still shot from the movie.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Finally Moving North

After two months in Apache Junction, AZ, I'm finally moving north and starting my summer adventures. I may even need to post more! The first stop was a great boondocking spot north of Congress, AZ off Stanton Rd.

Phil and I drove back to Wickenburg in the car and I finally got to visit with the poor prisoner tied to the jail tree. I was so busy when we were here for the dance rally in November that never got the chance then. Surprisingly, he hasn't moved a bit!

From there we drove on to a parking place on FR 89B southwest of Sedona. The WINs are having a gathering near here, but are staying in a bigger spot farther away, but close enough for us to visit.

Every morning the balloons go by.

The first thing the WINs did was a tour of town and the vortexes in Sedona. We started off with the artsy shopping area called Tlaquepaque. (No idea how to pronounce that...)

I didn't buy anything, but took lots of pictures.

From there we went on a tour of the local energy vortexes. The first one was Bell Rock. Hmmmmm... I don't feel anything at all.

But when I was here back in 2007, I got a much better photo.

From there we went to the Chapel of the Holy Cross.

From the chapel, you get a nice view of the pricey homes in Sedona, with Cathedral Rock in the background.

Wow - how's that for a backyard!

Another vortex is at the airport, where you get another great view of town and the red rocks surrounding it.

I'm going to be here for a while, so there's lots more to come!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Goldfield Ghost Town

A couple weeks ago we went out to see the Goldfield Ghost Town, near Apache Junction. Admission is free - except for the tours -

And if you're so inclined, you can ride your horse there. The Superstition Mountains make a beautiful background.

And here's the best thing - lots of rusty stuff!

More rusty stuff!

And even a rusty old cell tower!!!

On weekends they have a gun fight. It starts out calm enough -

But soon there are dead bodies all over the place.

Never fear, eventually they all get up and pose for pictures.

Spring is definitely in the air. I love the palo verde tree blooms.

The birds were gathering nesting material -

And I was trying to pick up a cowboy. Unfortunately, he ended up being kind of a dummy...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Superstition Mountain Hikes, Plus a Happy Ending

A few weeks ago, we were on a search for poppies. We did a short hike from the east end of the Lost Gold Mine trail in the Superstition Wilderness. The trailhead is located a half mile before the end of Peralta road.

The jagged tips of the Superstition Mountains make for a nice backdrop.

Wow! Success! There it is - the one poppy on the entire trail! And I didn't even get a good picture. I guess this wasn't a good year for poppies.

This guy was out looking too. We also saw a gila monster, but he was too fast for me to get any pictures.

More wildlife! I'll bet you've never seen a cat who hiked.

Another trail we did was the Hieroglyphics Trail, which takes off from the middle of the Lost Gold Mine trail at the end of Cloudview Rd. It's a short, but rocky, hike.

All the different cactus are starting to bloom.

There are lots of petroglyphs on rock panels above the only water source in the area.

I can just imagine mothers coming to get water -

And sending their kids over to peck a picture to keep them out of their hair.

The trail goes on to the top of the hill for anyone crazy enough to want to go over the rocks.

And now for the happy ending! Remember poor Mr. Gambel's Quail looking for a mate? Well he found a sweetie, and they are busily gathering nesting material!