Friday, November 30, 2007

Kendrick Peak

This view is looking almost directly west from the top of Agassiz Peak, the second highest point in the state of Arizona. The mountain you see on the left is called Kendrick Peak, one of the largest volcanic peaks in the San Francisco Peaks volcanic field it tops out at about 10,418 feet above sea level.

Thursday, November 29, 2007


I found this chunk of obsidian, a glass-like volcanic stone, embedded in this stone and mortar wall near Heritage Square in downtown Flagstaff. Only in Flagstaff, a city located in the center of a volcanic field, would a chuck of obsidian, a relatively rare type of stone, be used for such a plain purpose.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Neon Lonely

The Hotel Monte Vista's neon sign by night. I like this shot. To me, it has a quiet, lonely feel to it.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

More Color

OK, I lied. The post on November 14th wasn't my last Fall post for this year. This photo was taken near Sedona on the West Fork Trail a couple of weeks ago. Sedona is at a much lower elevation than Flagstaff, so Fall lasts a lot longer down there. Enjoy this last bit of autumn color.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Bumble Bee and Cactus

Like most of the country this weekend, we have some family visiting us for Thanksgiving. My brother- and sister-in-law from Denver wanted to see some saguaro cactus while they were here in Arizona, and since the nearest saguaros are only about an hours drive from Flagstaff, I decided to drive them down for a photo op with the plant that is nearly synonymous with Arizona. This photo was taken near the town of Bumble Bee off of I-17 just north of Phoenix.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The Humble Cranberry

My tribute to Thanksgiving this year is a salute to the cranberry. So much sour, citrusy goodness packed into such a small berry. Why do we eat them only one day a year? They are a natural source of vitamin C, add a great zing to any dish and can even prevent reoccurring UTIs. So I ask, why aren't these humble berries on our plate more often?

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Trains, Trains, Trains

Getting back to my train theme, this is the 1929 Baldwin Articulated Locomotive. The historic steam engine was once used on the Santa Fe-Burlington Railroad, which happens to be the rail line that passes through Flagstaff. Located outside of the Pioneer Museum on Highway 180 outside of town, the engine was relocated there in 1994 and has been a familiar sight to many tourists traveling to the Grand Canyon.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Timber Cart

Sorry for the late post today. I'm having "technical difficulties" with my computer, so you'll have to bear with me for the next couple days, OK folks?!

This is a reproduction of a two-wheeled timber cart located near the Flagstaff train depot. This type of cart was used to haul cut timber from the woods around Flagstaff to the railway station to shipped west. I posted a different view of this cart a couple months ago. You can see the previous post here.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Wilderness Silliness

My wife mimicking a curvy aspen trunk near Inner Basin Trail. We get a little silly sometimes as you can see. Here's another photo of the curvy aspens along this trail.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sunset Trail

My wife and I went for a hike on Sunset Trail, today. I can definitely see where it got its name. Although we weren't there at sunset, the trail is positioned in such a way that you would have a view of the sun setting directly behind the mountains. Beautiful.

Anyway, Sunset Trail is an easy 4-mile hike that gives you some great views of the San Francisco Peaks, which you can see in the photo above. The peak on the right is Agassiz Peak (12,356 ft asl) and on the left is Humphreys Peak (12,633 ft asl), the two highest points in the state of Arizona.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Friday, November 16, 2007

Neon Accommodations

A night shot of the Hotel Monte Vista's neon sign, which can be seen from almost anywhere in town. More information can be found in previous posts about the Hotel Monte Vista here and here.

Thursday, November 15, 2007


As I've mentioned before in previous posts, Flagstaff owes its existence to the railroad. Originally a lumber producing town, the railroad provided Flagstaff with the only convenient and efficient way of transporting the cut and processed lumber to where it was needed most, namely California. So when most people think of Flagstaff, they also think of trains.

Among the residents of Flagstaff there is almost a love-hate relationship with the train. Because they pass through here so frequently (4 trains per hour on average, 24 hours a day), they often create traffic congestion during "rush hour". Also, each time the train comes to a street crossing it has to blow its horn, which can be heard for miles making life for those living near the crossings very difficult. But we also like the train for the history and nostalgia it brings to our city. Each summer it brings in a flood of national and international tourists ready to see the sights of Northern Arizona, which in turn bolsters our local economy. However, whether you hate it or love it, the railway has always been and will continue to be a fixture to live here in Flagstaff.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Autumn Says Goodbye

This is probably one of the last Autumn photos I'll post. By now most of the leaves are off the trees in Flagstaff and although the highs are still in the 60s, the nights are getting into the 20s and it's clear that winter is on its way. Enjoy this last bit of Fall color while you can.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Southwest Decor

The saguaro cactus is a pretty common theme throughout the Southwest and even though they don't grow here in Flagstaff, you still seem to come across their likeness on a daily basis. This photo is actually from an outside waiting area at Flagstaff Medical Center. It was so kitschy I had to take a picture of it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Flagstaff Sunset

Although I have posted photos of sunsets before, I just like them so much I have to post another. I took this a few weeks ago while house-sitting for a friend. It's pretty typical for a Flagstaff sunset during the Monsoons.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Spikey Protection

This is an agave plant as viewed from above. As you can see, its spiny leaves grow outward from the center is concentric circles. Each leaf is tipped with a hard, sharp point in order to protect is water-rich flesh from foraging animals. Agave are very common in the American Southwest as well as northern Mexico. To me it's a perfect symbol for the Arizona Desert.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


I came across this gnarled, dead ponderosa pine tree on a hike several weeks ago. Based on its size, I would guess that the tree was at least a couple hundred years old when it died. It's strange to think that this tree has been growing here long before Flagstaff even existed and now here it stands, dead and forgotten. You can see another view of it here.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Sun Peeks Out

While out and about town taking pictures a couple of weekends ago, I caught this shot just as the sun started to peek out from behind a cloud. The light pole happened to be in the right spot to give this photo a nice balance.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Hang On!!!!!!

I had just finished the 150 mile drive from Phoenix to Flagstaff after class last Friday, got out of my car and found this little guy clinging to the roof of the car. How he hung on for 2 and a half hours at speeds of 80 miles per hour I don't know. I guess he heard about how cool Flagstaff is and just had to make the trip.

BTW, I have no idea what that white stuff is on his back. Gross!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

What Time Is It?

This clock hangs on a building in downtown Flagstaff, letting everyone know what time it is. It happened to be ten minutes past one when I took this picture.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Furniture Barn

A little funny, a little frightening, this building with the huge cow painted on the front of it houses the Furniture Barn, which, according to their sign, sells quality furniture. I always wondered what it would be like to be in the presence of a 2-story tall cow, and now I know. One more life experience to add to my list.

Monday, November 5, 2007


I know, I know. It's a little late to post Halloween photos, but too bad, you're getting one. :-P Even though we don't have kids yet, my wife and I still love carving pumpkins each year. The big one is mine and the little one is hers.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

The Rendezvous

This is the neon sign in the window of The Rendezvous, a coffee house and martini bar located on the first floor of the Hotel Monte Vista. Serving coffee during the day and alcohol-based drinks by night, this new cafe has quickly become a local favorite. On the corner of Aspen Avenue and San Francisco Street, it is ideally located for anyone visiting the historic downtown area. Stop in and check it out.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Grandview View

Last weekend my wife and I went for a hike in the Grand Canyon. Grandview Trail is located on the south rim of the Canyon and switchbacks down into the Canyon very quickly. We stayed until sunset and I was able to get this great panoramic photo. It was made by stitching to photographs together. Other photos from our hike can been seen here.

Friday, November 2, 2007

GC Strata

This is the base of a flagpole located in Heritage Square in downtown Flagstaff. The line of stones that runs diagonally down the front is made up of samples of stone from the stratigraphic layers found in the walls of the Grand Canyon. These layers represent almost 2 billion years of geologic time.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Smoky Sunset

First off, my wife took this picture, not me, but I still wanted to post it. In June of 2006, a small wildfire broke out just east of town. Named the Woody Fire, it burned over 100 acres and forced evacuation of 1000 homes before it was contained and eventually extinguished. Although, it was scary at the time, the smoke from the fire made for a beautiful sunset that night, which my wife caught in this photo. You can see a helicopter in the upper right hand corner surveying the damage.