Friday, November 26, 2010

Ghosts of Thanksgivings past

We returned to Hall Ranch this week but this time on foot for a 4 hour, nearly 9 1/2 mile hike with  1300'-1400' of elevation gain.  No dogs or bikes allowed on this trail so again I've hardly ever been on it even though it's a mere 20 minute drive.  I think I've been on it twice before in the 15 or so years that the trail has been there.

Nighthawk trail

How cool would it be to have photos in my blog of actual wild turkeys on the day after Thanksgiving?  So imagine my delight when I heard the telltale sound of gobbling right off the trail at the start of the hike.  AND I had the nice SLR camera out hanging on my neck, turned on, lens cap off, all zoomed in and ready to go.  How often does that ever happen??!!  But where were the turkeys?  Even though the gobbling was loud and there was a lot of it I couldn't see any birds.  They're hardly stealth creatures and they don't move fast or with a whole lot of conviction but despite scouring the trail up and down neither Jonny nor I could find so much as a feather.  I concluded they were ghost turkeys of Thanksgivings past.  They returned one more time to haunt us about an hour further along the trail.  I kept eye and ear open for them the entire hike and camera at the ready but the best I could do was some deer.

Yeah, I know, big whup.  You wanted to see wild turkeys.  Me too.

It was a beautiful hike though, even if the ghost turkeys gave us the slip.

I didn't bring food with me partly because I thought we were going on a short hike and partly because I forgot so after 4 hours I was a bit dizzy and bonky by the end but I managed to get back to the car and home without passing out.  I had plenty of water but I was careful not to drink too much of it.  I'm certain the passing out incident I had this summer was due to too much water and no electrolytes since I was only out biking for an hour and 45 minutes.

We were originally planning on snowshoeing up in Rocky Mountain National Park but it was supposed to be a nice sunny warm-ish day in town and I couldn't bear the thought of driving up so high and freezing my buns off.  I love skiing and snowshoeing and being in the high country in winter but I'm not quite ready for it just yet.  There will be a whole winter of snow and cold ahead of me, no point rushing into it.


  1. Very pretty pictures, even without the turkeys :-)

  2. Wow, it is beautiful! Fun to catch a sproinging deer. Can't fool me, though--the others are obviously fake; they're too perfectly posed and we KNOW that deer really live in zoos and in hill-dwelling people's flower gardens, or what's left of them.

  3. Yep, they're inflatable deer. Busted.

  4. Sure turkeys would be neat but I dunno, I think those photos of the deer are pretty darn cool. Did your camera zoom way in or were you fairly close to them? Either way, yes pretty darn cool.

    Love that second last photo too.

  5. I didn't have my zoom lens, just the kit lens (55 mm I think) but I did crop the deer photos and blow them up a little. Not a whole lot though. The deer around here let you get pretty close. I've got even better, closer shots of deer taken from my driveway and street, I'll post them one of these days.