Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Weekend in the Mountains

Last weekend we packed up our camping gear and headed out to Red River, Idaho to reacquaint ourselves with camping in the wilderness. We were doing this in preparation for an upcoming ATV ride we have planned in August. Since we haven't been camping in..... oh, at least 10 years, we thought it would be a good idea to do a test run before we actually rode off into the real wilderness and encountered problems we didn't prepare for. It was a good thing we did this as we had a few minor difugalties along the way. A few good things to remember for next time....

When you get out of your vehicle to admire the scenery don't stand on an anthill!

Make sure the camp stoves and lanterns are in working order before leaving.

Pack lots of mosquito repellent!

We did find time to do some relaxing things like pan for gold, ride the four wheeler trails and watch the abundant wildlife. And the night sky was absolutely spectacular!! I had forgotten how many stars you can see when you get far enough away from civilizations lights.

I took two cameras with to capture the flora and fauna and was rewarded with some great shots of the wildlife. I also took with my sketch book hoping to find a quiet moment to sit and sketch, something I haven't done in many, many years. At least, not field sketching. The voracious mosquitoes didn't allow for much of that though. Even though I had on repellent they were bound and determined to bite me on any exposed spot they could find! Mostly they tried for my eyes and ears....very annoying when you're trying to sketch! I did find this baby robin clinging to a small shrub in some tall grass. His parents were busy collecting food for him all day.
I was able to get several photos of him and managed to get a sketch done as he was sitting very quietly and hardly moved. I watched him all day until it got dark. In the morning he was gone and my hope was that he found the strength and courage to fly to a safer spot.
I was also able to get a photo of this frog that sat in a little pool where my husband was panning for gold. He seemed perfectly content to share his space with Brian and allowed me several pictures. It wasn't until I tried to catch him that he dove and swam away. I think I've identified him as a Columbian Spotted Frog.

I'm planning on trying to do some more field sketching this week just around the area where I live. If mosquitoes don't carry me off or ants aren't attacking me I'll try to get some of the sketches posted!