Friday, October 31, 2008

Stunning Rocks, Saguaro Cacti, Roosevelt Lake & Other Views from Tonto Forest

My husband and I are still visiting with family in Arizona, and we've taken a day or two to travel to our favorite places. I haven't had the opportunity to post, but today I'm finally taking the time to do so. I hope you enjoy these photos of scenic Arizona. This state is full of breathtaking landscapes and natural wonders. These are views from our airplane as we flew in, approaching Roosevelt Lake from the east. It was a spectacular scene, even from the smudged window of our plane!

A few days later, we drove north into the Tonto Basin and spent an afternoon looking at the sights. Below is a view of Roosevelt Lake from the west, taken on the path that runs up to the Tonto National Monument, which consists of ruins from the Salado people who inhabited the Tonto Basin in central Arizona between 1150 and 1450 A.D. The Salado culture was named for the Salt River (Rio Salado) that was so important to their way of life.

The rocks along the path were as beautiful as the larger panoramas of the lake. Naturally, I had to shoot a lot of them in spite of the bees that were flitting too close to my face, even buzzing near my ear, on this too-hot autumn day. Imagine, 95 degrees for the entire last two weeks of October! Thankfully the weather was dry, making the heat a bit more bearable. The rocks were full of copper, another hiker told me, but I really have no idea what the composition of the mountain was. I saw layers of red rock and shards in what seemed like a million colors and configurations. One day I'll have to do some research on this.

Here's a view of the huge Saguaro cacti from the path leading down from the ruins. I've heard that each arm of the cactus represents almost a hundred years of growth! (I didn't go into the ruins on this trip, because the bees and yellow wasps were still so active. I've been told that they often nest in the "caves.")

It's hard to believe how fertile and alive the desert is. Far from barren or lifeless, the diversity of plants and animals is stunning.

Here are some flowers blooming along a garden wall in Phoenix, where the flora and fauna are more manicured!

We drove north to Sedona a few days later, and the scenery there was just as majestic and inspiring. If I have time to post again this week, I'll share some of those shots with you.

I hope you enjoyed these. I've missed you all, although I've enjoyed the time away from sitting at my desk and computer!

Just a reminder to my blogging friends in the USA: Let's all get out there and VOTE on Election Day! Our democracy depends on our participation!

All images are copyright 2008 Lynda Lehmann.


  1. Oh Lynda,
    It's so good to see make a post. And oh my goodness these are all beautiful shots.

    We go through Arizona quite a bit and it truly is a beautiful state.

    You are so correct about the dessert. There's such beauty to be found everywhere.

    I hope you enjoy your break and have a lots of fun!!:-)))

  2. Lynda these are spectacular photos with breath-taking views. How beautiful the desert really is. Look forward to seeing more shots :)

  3. Beautiful post, and look forward to seeing the photographs of Sedona.
    Are you going to take some of this as an inspiration for future painting?

  4. I've missed you too, Lynda! I'm so glad you are enjoying your visit in the Southwest. Your aerial photos are breathtaking. And your observation about the desert being alive and full of life is a very astute one. I can just imagine Saguaro ending up in a future painting of yours.


  5. ttpyes, great shots. I like the first one best.

  6. I love the first photo Lynda!!
    that would make an amazing abstract painting :)
    those cacti make wonderful subjects...standing like silent sentinels...
    it must be wonderful to enjoy the vast magnificence of this area....and it looks like there aren't any people around to ruin it.. :0
    have a great trip and happy voting...

  7. Kia ora Lynda,
    There is so much life and beauty in the deserts. Edward Abbey, one of my favourite writers loved roaming them, and I felt that same connection through your words and photos. So different to the green lushness of New Zealand, but equally as moving. So happy to read and view your interactions with Nature. Cheers Lynda, travel safely.

  8. Lynde:

    Those are really great pictures. As you know, I came from the Mojave Desert, and for all of the years I have lived in the city, I still feel drawn back to the desert. It's amazing. My sister lives in Phoenix, and they drive all over the desert on their astronomy trips. But I don't see enough of it. Your pictures reminded me of home.

    I miss your visits to my my site.

    Happy trails.

  9. Lovely pix here. Arizona's truly breathtaking. I took a road trip there over 10 years ago now--was just speaking w/the hubby about going back at some point (he's never been.) We saw Meteor Crater, the Grand Canyon & I still have the videotape from our helicopter tour of Sedona.

  10. I love Arizona and want to go back. Made the drive from Scottsdale to the rim of the Grand Canyon in one day and will never forget the change in temp, terrain, and natural majesty. It was inspiring. Have a wonderful time!

  11. Wow Lynda - you have got some beauties here! Love the cactus with the river snaking behind them in the background. And the rocks are really something else. Someday I would love to visit the desert - so different from New England. Enjoy the rest of your trip - can't wait to see what else you captured!


  12. Lynda, what can I say, awesome shots, again I bet there is quite the view of the stars at night, I love cactus shots, very cool.

  13. Hey Lynda,

    Arizona is simply gorgeous!! I loved the photos: thanks for the gift, darling :D!
    And the flowers are a delightful final touch!!

    Congratulations for the historical outcome; the US electorate is awesome: you must be happy :D!

    We miss you too, but we are even happier about you having fun over there :D!

    Have fun!


  14. Beeeautiful!!! Thanks for sharing.

  15. Lynda Arizona is beautiful, these are very nice photos, and photos of textures. You are so good on taking them.
    I traveled to Arizona few years ago, I loved it, but I had short time there. Well thanks for sharing your travel photos and good old memories that were almost fading....Anna :)


I try to respond to comments whenever I can. I ALWAYS appreciate your visits and friendship, and I will reciprocate with visits to your site. Thanks for sharing parts of your blogging journey with me. I value each and every one of you.

NOTE: Please, no more memes, schemes, or awards. They're fun and they may help us to know each other better, but I'd rather spend the time reading your posts and having you READ mine!

Happy blogging!

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Buy My Art!

My most popular images for sale at Shutterstock:

Comical and Endearing Bird Ritual....