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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Grand Teton National Park - A Sudden Storm in Wyoming

Grand Teton National Park

Clouds reflected perfectly from the pond as we drove up through the sagebrush toward Jenny Lake.
 The sky might be bright and sunny, but things can change rapidly in the mountains.

A white pelican! 
The park's elevation ranges from the valley floor at 6,320 feet to 13,770 feet on the summit of the Grand Teton.
 Storms can come up quickly as the moist air rises and cools at the peak.
 Directions to the Grand Tetons

For more on the natural wonders of Grand Teton N.P. 

And visit
see more videos with natural sound from Wyoming!
 In Hot Water - Yellowstone Basin - Yellowstone National Park (geysers & paint pots)
See Yellowstone Hot Pools Bubbling (geothermal pools)
Keri, Michael and Bodie as a puppy!

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Wildlife at The Glendale Narrows of the Los Angeles River

Los Angeles River at Glendale Narrows
Walking the Los Angeles River continues to surprise us. 

The curve of the River as it leaves the San Fernando Valley and heads toward the center of Los Angeles is called the Glendale Narrows.

A small section has a natural bottom, rather than concrete, and the sweep of the curve, slows the water's flow. Together these aspects create another wildlife oasis.

black-necked stilts feeding in the River
As we walked with friends, we met a gentleman admiring the black-necked stilts. These tall black-and-white birds with pink legs are quite graphically beautiful. Our fellow birder turned out to be wildlife and landscape artist Andrew Peters who was opening an exhibit at the Autry Museum that afternoon as part of Masters of the American West 2016. He was visiting from Iowa and was stunned to find such diversity of bird life in the center of our metropolis. He took several photos of the stilts for a possible painting.

Downtown Los Angeles is now in view
We all agreed that the Los Angeles River is a treasure. Its a shame more people don't recognize the habitat it provides. 

Come down to the River and see for yourself. 

We're headed toward downtown and eventually Long Beach and the sea.

More Earth Minutes Walking the Los Angeles River
Discover the Headwaters of the Los Angeles River (least sandpipers, American crows) 
Walking the L.A. River - West San Fernando Valley (killdeer, mallards, American crows)
Discover L.A. River at Sepulveda Basin (red-tailed hawk, Canada geese, American wigeon)
Sepulveda Basin - An Earth Minute in One Spot (American coot, double-crested cormorant, song sparrow)
Discover a new Earth Minute weekly

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Walk the Sand in Northern California - Gold Bluffs Beach, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park

Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park is one of our favorite places on the Pacific coast.
Located about fifty miles north of Eureka, the beach is windswept yet full of life.
Walk the sand with us! HD

Driftwood provides shelter for shrubs and trees on the beach.
 Swimmers Beware - Nasty riptide! 
Gold Bluffs Beach and Elk Prairie Campgrounds are available for reservations at or by phone at 1-800-444-7275. 

 For more videos about the park, visit us at

Discover Fern Canyon, Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, CA

Friday, February 5, 2016

Small Discoveries Under Young Oak Trees

The young coast live oaks (Quercus agrifolia) are still struggling with lower rainfall, but in their protection a variety of plants and animals thrive.

One of the plants sending up shoots and flowering is the manroot or wild cucumber. This tender vine will produce baseball-sized fruit covered in spikes. (see the dried fruit in fall - A Walk on Mulholland Hwy)

With just a little rain new plants sprout, just off the beaten trail in under the young oaks. I followed this path trying to get a photo of a male Nuttall's woodpecker and I found a quiet and unexpected Earth Minute.

See more CA Native plants:
Hidden Gardens of LA
Do Trees Dream?
How Tall is a Redwood Tree?
Take a Stroll Under the Oaks - Rocky Oaks Park
Leaves on Native Plants Fight Drought
Yucca Blossoms

Visit The Earth Minute each week for a new Minute of Nature