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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Hummingbirds and summertime

I savored another breakfast on the deck with the Duo and the Runner. The Broad-tailed hummingbirds zipped and zoomed over our heads. A female...
And a male...
Our hummingbirds arrived about two weeks late this spring, probably because our flowering plants have also lagged behind their normal schedule. However, as the hummingbirds are becoming numerous with the humming sound of their wings as a constant song in the background, one of their favorite flowers is blossoming - the red currant (Ribes cereum). Hummingbirds love to drink nectar from these flowers.
Despite K's health travails, we still took a short mountain bike ride this morning. In the warm summer sun, she galloped over the top of Hug Hill, full of joy. I love mountain biking with K. For some reason, sharing my rides with her is one of my favorite things on Earth.

I talked with my vet about agility and whether K should do it despite her toe amputation. The vet's answer was that it would be risky - because agility requires jumping and sudden direction changes that stress the paw. Her advice was not to do agility if I wanted to keep K capable of running with me when I mountain bike. I'm okay with that. We'll figure out new games to play together.
After my short ride with K, I almost always head out for a ride solo, rejoicing in springtime. Today, a pair of velvet-antlered bucks watched me pedal by them. Velvet antlers are such a sign of spring-summer!
I love riding hard, pushing myself to my limits, and I reserve that kind of mountain biking for when K isn't with me. However, I still stop sometimes to look at flowers or other wonders of nature. I found the flowers in the next photo below a cliff in a basin of shade and moisture. I've never seen them before now, and I can't figure what these subtle beauties are! Does anyone know?

I finished the day with a mellow sunset hike with the Duo yesterday evening. R is allowed to hike on easy trails but has to stay on leash due to his toenail surgery, much to his displeasure. Just as the sun dropped below the Continental Divide, it bathed the forest in a warm light.
The Duo sat with me, enjoying the magic moment as the forest was transformed.
Then, we watched the sunset show. It's much better than any movie that I've ever seen.
No more news on Socks... To answer one question, both male and female bears mark trees so tree-marking doesn't give us a hint as to Socks' gender. I agree with all of you - it's tough watching any young adult try to find their way in the world. I've read that many yearling cubs go up in trees after their mothers leave them and don't come down for days. At least Socks is moving around a bit. I predict that this yearling cub will find his/her way in this big goofy world. The hard part is that we'll see only glimpses of Socks' life, when this bear happens to walk in front of one of my cameras. I wish that we could know more.


  1. Those are some spectacular sunsets! I've joined a photo group that does a scavenger hunt and has to find a certain list of pictures each month. One of the assignments this month is a sunrise or sunset. So far, I haven't caught one that I'm really in love with, and when I see yours, I know why! lol

    I'm glad K and R are both on the mend! I can see the vet's point about all the turning and sudden stops in agility, and I'm betting that K would much prefer to run with you than do agility.

    Do you think you'll be able to keep recognizing Socks like you do The Cowboy as he or she gets older?

  2. I watched the sunset this evening, and it was not nearly as spectacular as yours, but from my porch it was. I'm glad your pups are on the mend, and I admire you for finding the balance in what K is able to do--I know people who sadly don't.

    Paws crossed that Socks is finding his way and isn't up a tree! :-)

  3. How we would love to share that breakfast with you and see all those wonders of nature - gorgeous photos.

    Good to know that both K and R are healing. Knowing you, they will both always be challenged and have fun.

  4. What great shots AGAIN!

    Now to send the post to Auntie Di - she LOVES her Phoenix Hummies!

  5. now we are really jealous
    Benny & Lily

  6. Your hummer photos are more than wonderful! I could just sit and look at them for long times.

    I am not going to worry about Socks because I think he can figure out what to do, even if he sits in a tree for a couple of days! Might do him some good: you know, like seeing The Big Picture!


    Stella, Jo and Zkhat

  7. The sound of hummingbirds wings . Can there be any mnore exotic phrase in the English language ?

  8. Oh the sky shots are splendorious!
    I was wondering how K and R were doing,, and it sounds like their both mending..
    everyday is a new challenge,,
    for all of us,,,,

  9. The humming bird photos are awesome! And what flowers and skyscapes :)

    Waggin at ya,

  10. Hummingbirds whizzing around...I can hear them now. The flowers again unique to your world are magnificent...always enjoy that....the white one's...big question mark...will try to find something....hope the dogs are healing/feeling tough to hear the travails they have been through!

  11. Gorgeous pictures again!! Love those Hummingbirds very much!! You really live in a wonderful area! Lots of love, Debbie & Holly

  12. We agree. Mother Nature provides far more entertainment than any movie or Tv show (which is probably why I never seem to be up to date on the latest celebrity or show).

  13. Even R is glowing in the sunset llight!!

  14. Love the hummingbird and sunset shots.

  15. We love the picture of the Duo with the sun on them!


  16. I love those hummingbird shots! My mom is really into hummingbirds. The sunset photos are lovely too. K and R always look particularly amazing in the golden sunrises and sunsets.

  17. I've been hearing more and more hummingbirds this past few days, too. But I haven't been able to capture them on camera the way you have.

    I'm hoping with all the rain we received a couple of weeks ago, the wildflower season will be phenomenal. You're off to a great start in recording it!

  18. I just love hummingbirds! You got some amazing photos.


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