Monday, January 25, 2010

Sunset over Oro Valley

I was shooting some climbing, and turned around just in time to get this shot.
This is why I moved out here.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Brian and Simone Visit: Day 4

So today was a lazy day for the most part. It started out dark and stormy, ended up being a beautiful day again, obviously. We went and checked out the San Xavier del Bac Mission south of Tucson on the Tohono O'odham Nation reservation. The mission was built in the late 1700's by Spanish missionaries. And they are constantly working on restoring it. Lacking money and resources, they chose to decorate the church with elaborate paintings, intended to mimic gold and other lavish decorations typical of European cathedrals.

San Xavier del Bac Mission

In the main cathedral part
He looks guilty of something.
A separate single room building for prayers, statues and candles.

Brian and Simone Visit: Day 3

So today we tried to go do a little climbing up at Windy Point, but unfortunately it had snowed the night before up on the mountain. Even though we didn't climb, the beautiful view was well worth the drive. We then decided to go to the bottom of the mountain and check out Sabino Canyon. We didn't get there till about 2:30 and didn't much time to see the beautiful part of the canyon higher up. So we hitched a ride on the senior citizen tram to the top, hiked a 3 mile loop near the top and caught a ride back down.

A few cyclist on their way down from Windy Point in snowy weather.
Tram cars passing in the day, apparently its freezing out here (upper 50's)
Sabino Canyon from the end.
Phoneline Trail
Sweet view

Brian and Simone Visit: Day 2

So day 2 comes, and despite 70% chance of rain and clouds all day we get a perfect 70F sunny day. So we headed to Saguaro National Park West to do some hiking, stopping at Gates Pass along the way. (P.S. Every visitor will be taken to Gates Pass and told that it is mine). Anyway we attempted a 7 mile hike to a 4000+ft peak, but ended up following a wash for 2 miles instead of the trail and had to forge our own trail to meet up with a real one about 150 ft above us at the top of the Kings Canyon. By the time we made it to the trail head that takes you to the peak some dark clouds were rolling in on the horizon and we decided to head back. We should've went for it since by the time we got to the car it was still dry and sunnier than ever out, but it was still an awesome time. After the hike we returned home to Emma and Nicole, and we all went out for a monstrous Mexican feast where we met up with Kyle.

Brian looking West from Gates Pass
Gates Pass: a shortcut through the Tucson Mtns found by Thomas Gates
Hiking in Kings Canyon, not on Kings Canyon Trail apparently.
Helping Simone up to the actual trail.
A view down Kings Canyon from on top of a dry water fall.

Brian and Simone's Visit: Day 1

So Brian and Simone came out to visit us, like three days after we got here ourselves. It was perfect, since we were all just exploring together. I can't believe how much we got done in less than 5 days. We loved having them visit and had so much fun together, hopefully they'll come back soon!(Spring Break 2010: Party in the Desert) Here are a few photos from our adventures, by day.

We picked them up from the airport and shot up to the top of Mt. Lemmon. Well we tried, but at about mile 8 I realized that I didn't have any gas, so we went back down to the bottom, filled up and then went up to Summerhaven. This was my first time all the way to the top of Mt. Lemmon, or at least as far up as the road goes, which is Summerhaven, AZ, somewhere around 9000ft I think.

Brian at Windy Point
View of Catalina Highway from Windy Point
Simone photo shoot @ Windy Point
Farther up(notice the jackets and pine trees)
Jazzy is a born mountain climber (somewhere above 8000ft)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Photos coming soon

We have been doing tons of stuff here in Tucson! Photos are coming soon, probably this weekend. Simone and Brian came to visit us, and once they leave I'll post photos of all of our adventures. It's been great having friends here to explore all the new places with us. We've driven to the top of Mt Lemmon, mistaken a wash for a trail in Saguaro National Park West, played in the snow and ridden a tram car with a bunch of senior citizens in Sabino Canyon. And we still have a day and a half left with them!

We love Tucson.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Some of the first to be edited...

Mexico to the left and USA to the Right; The Rio Grande

Rio Grand Village campground and Big Bend National Park

Jazzy, soaking up some Texan rays

Chiso's Mountains; Big Bend

Desert plains rain storm


This town was really cool. Really neat south west architecture, tons of arts, and it was so tiny.
We stopped here at the suggestion of our friend Will and it was a good stop. The art was drawn to this tiny town in Western Texas when a Minimalist artist moved here in the 70's and got a grant to buy up an old decommissioned army base and turn it into permanent installations. And then about 10 years ago, a whole wave of big liberal city-type artist folk moved down and instantly quadrupled the property value. Emma and I don't like minimalism, but went on the tour anyway. We also ate some really good lunch there and stumbled across something we were searching for before our trip, the fake Prada store in the middle of Texas.

Big Bend #2

This one's for Nell

Texan good luck charm

This guy was like 15 ft from us, just hanging out.

Emma's first Road Runner sightings(And she shot this photo too)
Natural Hot Springs on the edge of the Rio Grande

Big Bend #1

fossil? looks like it. The are that is big bend has been an ocean floor twice, now the two sets of ocean floors are mountains (Except the Chisos Mountains)

this plant is dwarfing Emma

Rio Grande!(And our first warm weather day)
First view of the Rio Grande!

Entering the park.

First Night Camping

Enchanted Rock State Park, TX

Texas Hill Country

climbing up enchanted rock, tx

just playing around on some boulders

see those tiny specks near the top? those are people
enchanted rock, tx

hamilton pools, tx

some perspective on the pools

Friday, January 15, 2010


After riding down a nearly car-less "bikeway" road to the university I then went rock climbing for a few hours. All the while wearing only a t-shirt and shorts.
P.S. photos to come tonight after dinner.
breakfast at frank & franciscos..if you don't know it, you should be jealous. self-proclaimed "best breakfast and mexican food in tucson"

Thursday, January 14, 2010

we're here!
change of plans ..tucson here we come!
helllllllooo marfa, texas! your town seems dead but your buildings are awespme...waiting to check out a tour of minimalist art at the chinati foundation
we survived hiking through the desert and were rewarded with a soak in a natural hot spring, on our way to marfa, texas

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

we're in texas for sure! 80mph speed limits and desert & mesas as far as the ey can see

Monday, January 11, 2010

Some more...(Out of order)

Rainy Bourbon St., New Orleans

Quick stop in Galveston, TX, to see Rachel and Will!

Heather and Pepper in Austin!
Thanks for letting us stay with you and Dan!