Archive for Climate

Tiny Pink Cactus Flowers and an Arizona Sunset

Tiny Pink Flowers

This little barrel cactus is in the xeriscape area in front of the garage wall east of the courtyard. I think it must be happy here since it has this ring of tiny pink flowers around its top.

Sundown

Today was mostly cloudy, but still pretty warm. Our high temperature was nowhere near record for this date, but we’ll take 74° anytime in January. I photographed the clouds as lighted up by the setting sun.

Click on either image to enlarge.

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Sunset Ripples

Sunset Ripples

When we went out to look at the sunset this evening, Verna took this photo of these rippling altocumulus clouds to the southeast of our house. This is an unusual cloud formation that generally occurs in advance of an approaching storm front. Sure enough, the National Weather Service is forecasting a 40 percent chance of rain tonight.

The clouds are formed when a wave is generated aloft; that is, the air mass is rising and falling in a wave-like motion as it is carried along in the upper atmosphere. The water vapor in the air condenses into droplets or ice crystals when it rises and evaporates again when it comes down below into warmer air.

Regardless of all the nerdy science involved in explaining the phenomenon, it sure is pretty to see up there. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Happy New Year!

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We had a pretty good day today. It started out with a little light snow, some of which stuck. Snow is unusual for us here and, coincidentally, it snowed here on New Year’s Eve in 2014, but today’s snowfall was nothing compared to that event. After it warmed up a bit, some gentle rainfall slushed all the snow away this afternoon.

2018 was good to us. Even though we had some surgery on the thyroid last march, there have been no health issues other than the usual arthritis and other aging things. We started a diet a couple of months ago and it has been working. I lost over 10 pounds so far and a couple of notches on the belt. Verna is doing as well.

In the coming year, we have springtime plans to head to Colorado. This year, we had a marker placed on an ancestor’s grave in Montrose, CO and we are planning to go view the work and to place a wreath or three. We also will be visiting in Pueblo, CO to place more wreaths and perhaps meet up with some long lost cousins.

For 2019, we wish everyone a wonderful, prosperous and happy new year!

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Rainbow’s End

Rainbow’s End

Yesterday, we had some badly-needed rainfall here in the desert. It didn’t reach flash flood stage, but we got a fair amount of rain.

As the main part of the rain clouds passed to the northeast, conditions were perfect for a full double rainbow, horizon to horizon. I positioned myself to capture this photo of our house with the rainbow seemingly ending on it. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Vulture Peak on a Rainy Day

Vulture Peak on a Rainy Day

On our way out of the Fly-in and Classic Car Show today, I took this photo of Vulture Peak. There were rain showers all around and would soon begin raining here in Town. This photo shows the peak in an uncharacteristic backlit condition with dark clouds overhead and lighter ones to the south, behind the mountain range.

Vulture Peak is the highest point in the Vulture Mountain Range.

The Vulture Mountains are about 29 miles (47 km) long, and east of center, about 13 miles (21 km) wide; the range is somewhat crescent shaped, mainly trending east–west, and narrowing westwards. The northeast is followed by the course of a southeast stretch of the Hassayampa River; the river turns due-south west of Morristown, on US 60, making the east terminus of the range about 7 mi wide, at the rivers floodplain. The Hassayampa enters the north of the Hassayampa Plain, so a small river canyon region lies at the Vulture Mountain’s northeast, with the Wickenburg Mountains northeast, and the Hieroglyphic Mountains east.

The high point of the range is Vulture Peak, (3,658 feet (1,115 m)),[2] at the center east of the range. Another major peak anchors the west region of the range, Black Butte, at 3,612 feet (1,101 m)).

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Cherry Red Cactus Flowers

Cherry Red Cactus Flower

For the third and probably final time this season, the “Cherry Red” cactus (Trichocereus Grandiflorus) flowers are open. This cactus has the brightest red blooms of all the cactus flowers in our garden.

We had a little rain and some thunder this morning, but the clouds cleared and I could get this photo of one of the gorgeous flowers. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Cumulus and Cactus

Cumulus and Cactus

Verna took this photo today of some cumulus clouds building up east of us with the big saguaro and ocotillo in the foreground. We have been getting storms since Thursday of this week and expect them to continue until Monday according to the National Weather Service.

This evening, we are surrounded by thunder cells with lightning very frequent. We were out in the courtyard a few minutes ago when the International Space Station passed overhead and visible to us through the gaps in the clouds. Very entertaining!

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