This is a link to an awesome Must Watch You Tube video that is in tune with the Halloween Season and is quite creative while teaching the basics of CPR. Please share with family and friends!
The following are pictures I took while we were camping at Aspen Creek of a very large colony of chipmunks, a few years ago. The kits were extremely hard to photograph because they were constantly on the move and wouldn't stay still long enough for me to get a descent shot. Some were so young they couldn't have been more than 3-4 weeks old, such as the little guy directly below. Still they were an absolute joy to watch while we were sitting around camp!
Another sentry in training! Too cute!
This last video shows one of the colonies sentries nervously grooming himself. There were always sentries stationed an that rock because it sat on the edge of a tall rocky cliff that was honeycombed with chipmunk dens. One morning I even spotted a red tailed hawk sitting on the rock for a couple of seconds before it flew off and landed in some trees just across the creek. It was not an uncommon site to see raptors and even owls flying low through the narrow creek valley hunting for a meal.
Just a few more pics of our backcountry camping trip near the Mt. Baldy wilderness. The following photos were taken during a 4 mile circular hike I took during our 2nd week.
Poor Cricket! During this hike I left her back at camp, and Don called me on the walkie-talkie to tell me she was throwing a fit since she saw me cross the meadow.....without her. After an hour, Don called me again and said she still hadn't settled down and was actually chewing on her cable. I was a good 1.5 miles away from camp, and Don was teasing me that I was inflicting "emotional distress" on HIS dog because I left her behind. LOL! So I gave in and I told him to cut her loose and let her fly.
Now we had been working with her since she was a puppy to track me, by playing little games of hide and seek with her. Since I don't follow established trails, I knew this was going to be a real test of her tracking skills. After 5 minutes, I still hadn't seen her, so I called out several times, hoping she would focus in on my location. Then I spotted her, pronking in the air like an antelope, trying to get a better view of things over the tall grass. She always gets so excited when she finds me! After that, I took a long break and sat down on a log, and shared my jerky with her. We sat there for quite awhile listening to the sounds of the forest and the gentle quaking of the Aspens!
Cricket had been up and down this slope 20 times, as I tried to follow an elk path to the top of the ridge! Come on mom! What's taking you so long to get to the top?!
Absolutely one of the more colorful birds we saw, a Western Tanager! The bright beautiful colors of this bird just blew me away!
The following is a video of Don doing an exploratory hike with little Cricket at his side. He likes to scout out potential campsites during his hikes. We were thinking about moving to another area for a different view during our 2nd week, but decided against it during this trip. So glad we didn't move, because we probably would have missed the antelopes we spotted during week 2!
The following video shows one of several antelopes we spotted during this trip. He was the last one up the hill, and it looks like he stopped to rub his horns on a bush!
One morning I got up kinda early, just before dawn because I wanted to see if any elk were using the small hidden meadow to the north of camp as a place to bed down for the night. I had explored this meadow on previous trips and had found patches of crushed grass, so I knew it was used by the elk in the area.
As I walked along the trail near the top of the ridge, I rounded a rocky outcropping and surprised a small bobcat, who was chewing on what looked to be the remains of a chipmunk. As soon as she spotted me, she took on off up the slope. The whole encounter lasted just a few seconds, but still it was so exciting! I absolutely live for these rare glimpses of wildlife in the wilderness! I went back to the area later in the day when the lighting was better, to see if I could find any tracks the bobcat might have left, but the terrain was too rocky.
The following is a pic of the slope where I interrupted the bobcat having breakfast!
Aspen Creek is such an awesome place to experience nature in its full glory, and its remoteness is what really appeals to me! Its one of those special places that takes your breath away upon discovery! Something about the rugged wildness of the terrain that makes me feel like I have ventured into the lost lands of Middle Earth as depicted in the Lord of the Rings! I am already really looking forward to next year's trip!