Woods Creek Fen

I enjoyed my morning coffee at our local Fen yesterday. Beautiful, quiet and peaceful.

This watershed lies inconspicuously off Bates road, a few miles west of the traffic light in Driggs, on the right. The entrance is really small and easy to miss which, considering the environmental sensitivity of the area, is probably intentional.

The lookout area is great and the viewing scope works. The signs scattered around explain everything about the place and I put them all here. It’s also a nightly resting area for moose as I spotted several grass beds. Here’s a Map and the SlideShow.

SlideShow (Woods Creek Fen)
Categorized as The Valley


As I’ve traveled around the last two summers and camped from my truck I’ve wished I had a compact canopy system that I could hook up to the side of the truck quickly. I’ve passed on some nice spots just because there was no shade.

The idea for one has been circulating around my summer scrambled brain for a while now and this is what I came up with today. The ingredients are: one tarp, medium size bungee cord hooks, some thin rope and five stakes.

I’ve created five lines exactly the same length with hooks on both ends. These are slung over the truck and hooked to whatever I can find on the bottom edge and then connected to the tarp grommets on the other side.

The stakes are driven into the ground and the outside tarp grommets are placed on the top of each. I have five more lines with a single hook which lock the tarp and the stake together with one loop and then attach to something. In this case it’s trees but tomorrow I buy five stakes that can be driven into the ground.

The tarp, lines, stakes and hammer can be wrapped together and ride in the back.

SlideShow (Canopy)

Categorized as Vehicles

Tumble Tree

As I was chilling at the back forty campground yesterday a tumbleweed came rolling by me on the dry creek bed and lodged itself on the downed tree.

Tumbleweeds are rare around here. I’ve seen a few cross Highway 33 over the last few years and one showed up at our house when we first moved in, but this one just slowly appeared on my left, stopped, and said hello.

Here’s the first tumbleweed that appeared at the house eight years ago:

Categorized as House

Quiet Camp

I found a great little spot to camp for a couple of days. It’s on private property (I know the owner), right by a dried creek bed (mosquito free), some tall shade trees have my back and it’s quiet. Quiet is good as my house has been not…

There’s a fast secured internet connection available and my Alfa antenna on steroids has decoded and connected with it.

Heck, the place even has a fire pit with wood! Maybe I’ll just knock down a few stiff ones tonight and roast a wiener :-)

Categorized as Vacation 2

Stoned Sunday

We road tripped through Yellowstoned Park today, mostly just driving and looking with a few stops for pictures and a picnic lunch, which turned out to be a good option considering the mobility, ocd and menopause issues. It was a nice trip!

SlideShow (Stoned Sunday)

Categorized as Family

Foothill Barley

Big Holes foothill barley is my favorite crop here in the valley. I like the soft greens shortly before they fade to amber waves of grain. Here’s a Map to that location.

Categorized as The Valley

Canon SX280

My main camera for the last year has been the Canon PowerShot A1300 HD. I bought this little sweety because it was under a $100 and it had a viewfinder. It also had some great Canon electronics and it’s served me well. Alas, I never used the viewfinder…

Steph has lost her old point & shoot. There was a cow mutilation in the Valley recently and I believe the aliens spotted her camera on our deck and used it to document the event. Photographing surgically removed cow vaginas is now it’s new destiny.

Over the last 40 years I’ve made the transition from big 35mm rigs down to something I can put in my front pocket without appearing excited. Tonight I bought Canon’s great new point & shoot, the PowerShot SX280 HS from Amazon for $259 with free shipping and I gave the A1300 to Steph.

It speaks volumes for a manufacturer to have a customer move up to their latest and greatest product, without switching brands, and you deserve it Canon! This thing has GPS and WIFI which means I can geocode each shot and send it to my phone for upload, and it has Canon’s latest DIGIC 6 Image Processor for great pictures.

(Quote: You don't often see the big camera makers debut their new processing chips in compacts, but that's exactly what Canon has done with their new Digic 6 chip and the 20x optical zooming SX280 HS)

Categorized as Cameras

Troubled Nest

I’m assuming this was an Osprey nest that got blown apart by some of the fierce thunderstorm winds we’ve had recently. Ospreys are fish eaters, this spot is near the Teton River and they seem to prefer nesting in telephone poles around here.

The red material is somewhat disturbing. Was it from an abandoned construction site? It’s tough being a raptor, you can’t go online and check the internet for potentially dangerous nest building materials. Here’s a Map to that location.

Categorized as The Valley

Local Perspective

Today was a great day to explore roads never taken and get a little perspective on my neighborhood. The Plein Air festival is wrapping up and I spotted several artistic folks out there getting their own perspective on. The artist in this opening shot is from Sun Valley and she graciously allowed me to include her painting in my photo.

Note: Here’s a Map to that location and the house below is the one on the map.

SlideShow (Local Perspective)

Categorized as The Valley