Archive for the ‘SCVN’ Category

Bighorn Wildfire In Pima Canyon   4 comments

At first glance, this may look like a volcano erupting.

Bighorn Fire in Pima Canyon-1-72But, it’s the Bighorn Wildfire now having worked it’s way

Bighorn Fire Pima Canyon-2-72into Pima Canyon and the Finger Rock area of the Pusch Ridge Wilderness (June 10, 2020).

Pima Canyon October 2011The Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists lead hikes twice a year on the Pima Canyon Trail to a natural dam (6 miles round trip).
— — Images by kenne

Naturalist, Ed Rawl — Kind Words For A Very Special Man   2 comments

Butterfly TrailEd Rawl Over Looking the San Pedro Valley — Image by kenne

IN REMEMBERANCE

Edgar (Ed) Rawl passed away on April 18, 2020, after suffering a stroke. A celebration of life memorial service for Ed is planned for Saturday, May 9, 2020 (a simple ceremony in the desert was his expressed desire). We will meet in the overflow parking lot of Sabino Canyon at 6:00 am to beat the heat and walk a short distance from there. Ed’s friends are invited, and you may share your memories of him if you wish to do so. We will try to maintain social distancing and encourage everyone to wear a mask or other face covering.

“He was a soft-spoken, kind man who was always positive despite chronic health problems. He was good with the kids and a great colleague. He will be missed very much.” — Jan Labiner

. . . a beautiful remembrance and tribute to our good friend.” —  Phil Bentley

“Ed was a special person. I always think of him when I discuss with children why they should not get closer to the edge of a cliff (such as the dam overlook) than they are tall. Ed taught me that. His vast experience as a Park Ranger gave him the knowledge that never ceased to amaze me. RIP, my friend.” — Bill Kaufman

“Oh, I am so very sad…what a loss…he was such a special..pleasant person.” — Becky Duncan 

“Ed deserves this kind of tribute. Thank you!” — Dan Granger

“I remember so vividly our good friend Ed, our wonderful naturalist and hiker. It made me so sad to see our beautiful hike together….. and also glad ….. when I look at these mountains, I think Ed will be there somewhere!” — Alexa Von Bieberstein

“. . . a kind and gentle soul. Miss him greatly.” — Debbie and Jerry Bird

“. . . this special man who has been a treasure both for SCVN and all the people for whom he shared his love.  I remember with special fondness the day Ed led us on our hike to Thimble Peak.  I think of him and the rest of our small band every time I glimpse the peak.” — Tim Ralph

Ed was an incredible, kind, calm, and positive person. I knew the kids were lucky when they had him for their trip. I will miss him and remember him. Coming into the canyon will always invoke his memory to me, and his spirit will exist there for me.”Roberto Veranes

“He was a wonderful man.” — Linda Procter

“He was such a gentleman with a wonderful sense of humor.  He rarely spoke of his medical challenges, which were progressive.  Such an honorable man.  He will be missed.” — Nancy Murphy

“Ed has a style with children that was gentle, but firm. His ability to balance these two paradoxical qualities is what made him an exceptional man to be around. He had health issues for some time, but for the longest time, he fought them off, so to keep hiking. He was a fighter. ‘Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.'” — Kenne Turner

“It is still difficult for me to process this, and I suspect friends and many Nats must be dealing with a terrible sense of loss and sadness. Ed was a second mentor to me when I began in Elementary Program on Thursdays. I still use his “Lizzie” device with the NYSI kit…haven’t found anything better. He was knowledgeable, patient, possessed a wonderful dry wit, and thought deeply about many things, such as international affairs, and the role of the US in them.  His depth and breadth was astounding. He could be counted on to be there every week, and seldom made any mention of his health issues because, I think, he didn’t feel comfortable putting himself first.

It will be difficult to face a world without Ed in it.” — Jeff Hahn
An Album of Photos by kenne
Ed Rawl-Butterfly Trail 15 - 2012-06-01

Learning About Nature   Leave a comment

Elementary Program-5-Art-3-72“Learning About Nature” — Photo-Artistry by kenne

Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists teaching children about nature in Sabino Canyon.

 

Sabino Canyon Nature Program For Elementary School Students   Leave a comment

One of the subjects we teach is geology, how the Santa Catalina Mountains were
formed, and the importance of water in the formation of Sabino Canyon. Twelve
million years ago, the Santa Catalina Mountains were just a range of hills, but the
earth’s crust in western North America was being stretched. What resulted were
huge blocks with steep vaults forming an up-and-down landscape called the
Basin and Range Province. 

Kenne & 3rd Grade Students-72Naturalist, Kenne Turner with 3rd Grade Students (Sabino Canyon Dam Area)
— Images by Teacher

Sabino Canyon is composed of a hard metamorphic rock called “Catalina gneiss.”
Gneiss contains rock and five minerals; quartz, mica, feldspar, magnetite, and garnets.
Over time water and earthquakes have eroded the gneiss rock carrying smaller rocks
and minerals down streams like Sabino Creek. The minerals are deposited along the
creek edges, which created a natural laboratory to learn about the minerals by panning
for garnets. Need I say, kids love panning for garnets.    

Kenne&3rd Grade Students-72Students panning for garnets in Sabino Creek.

“For many Tucsonans, the canyon is an old friend. We are on a first-name basis.
On a sunny weekend morning, we say, simply, “Let’s go to Sabino.

— from Sabino Canyon: The Life of a Southwestern Oasis by David Wentworth Lazaroff

Catalina Highway Hoodoos   3 comments

Hoodoos-15-72

There’s a narrow trail that you have to scramble up a few feet before heading down under twisted alligator junipers. The best way to experience these ancient hoodoos along the Catalina Highway is to attack them from the rear, sorta speak.

This SCVN Friday Hike was to have two parts; explore the hoodoos followed by a hike from the Gordon Hirabayashi Campgrounds to Molino Basin. The hoodoos segment was led by naturalist Edi Moore, who is s long-time member of the Monday Morning Milers (MMM). The MMM was the first hiking group I begin hiking with after moving to Tucson. It was with the MMM that I first had an opportunity to explore the Catalina Highway Hoodoos. Of the 20 hikers on this Friday, Edi and I were the only ones to which this experience was not new. The views in and around the hoodoos are something else.

— kenne

 

Images by kenne
Click here to see more Catalina Highway Hoodoo photos.

A Beautiful Morning In Sabino Canyon   Leave a comment

Bear Canyon Trail-72.jpgBear Canyon Trail In Sabino Canyon Recreational Area — Image by kenne

We spent this morning teaching 2nd-grade students how the Hohokam peoples of southern Arizona lived hundreds of years ago. The Hohokam left much evidence of their presence in Sabino Canyon, which was not only their home but also the source of food, clothing, and shelter materials. Over the years, the Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists (SCVN) have developed activities, Back to the Past (BTTP), geared toward explaining the Hohokam and how they existed in the Sonoran Desert.

Today was such a beautiful fall day in Sabino Canyon, I had to share at least one image taken on our walk back to the Visitor Center.

— kenne

Could I but speak your tongue
      I would sing of pastel colored cliffs
      Where, under sapphire skies,
      The raincloud gently drifts.
      Of wondrous sunlit valleys wide,
      Timeless home of your clan — your tribe.
Could I but speak your tongue
      I would sing a prayer that in future days
      You would ever honor your ancient ways,
      And that the Gods of health and peace
      In their boundless blessings, never cease,
      To be generous to these children here below,
      These children of the Desert.

— C. J. Colby, “Song to the Indian,” Arizona Highways, August 1973

 

 

Jim Martin, In Loving Memory Of A Great Naturalist   1 comment

Jim and B.J. Martin-Edit-1-72.jpgJim and B.J. Martin, May 7, 2018 , were honored by achieving Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalist (SCVN) Emeritus Status.
— Image by kenne

I went to another funeral today, something I began doing at an early age while living with my grandparents. Old people’s friends die. Back then I didn’t always know the people and spent my time running around the graveyard across the road from the church with other children, in a small northeast Alabama rural town.

It’s different today being one of the old people whose friends are dying. When I became an SCVN member in 2011, Jim Martin had been an active member for 23 years, teaching elementary school children about nature and conservation, leading and participating in SCVN  hikes, and serving a treasurer, VP, and President of SCVN. I first met Jim on one of the SCVN Friday Hikes. He was an 82-year-old active hiker, a quiet, pleasant guy to be around — always smiling! 

Jim pasted away at the age of 90, July 16, 2019.

— kenne

 

 

A Hummingbird’s Nest   Leave a comment

A Symbiotic Relationship   3 comments

Lichen (1 of 1) blogLichens on rocks along the Wasson Peak trail. — Image by kenne

“Lichen is a composite organism consisting of a fungus (the mycobiont) and a photosynthetic partner (the photobiont or phycobiont) growing together in a symbiotic relationship. The photobiont is usually either a green alga (commonly Trebouxia) or cyanobacterium (commonly Nostoc).” 

When teaching children about lichen, Sabino Canyon Volunteer Nationalists (SCVN) share this short poem:

“Alice Algae took
a lichen
to Freddie Fungus,

but now
their relationship
is on the rocks.”

Biomes Of The Santa Catalina Mountains   5 comments

October 7th, SCVN naturalist David Dean conducted an advanced training tour of the Biomes of the Santa Catalina Mountains.

Biomes of the CatalinasWe began the tour by meeting at the McDonald’s at Catalina Highway where David provided an overview of the biomes of the Catalinas. Before starting the car caravan up Catalina Highway, David covered the lower biomes, the Saguaro-Palo Verde (100′ – 4,000′), which includes the dominant cacti and legume trees; the Desert Grassland (3,800″ – 5,000′) with grasses, succulents & shrubs being dominant.  

Biomes of the CatalinasAt about the 5.5-mile marker, we pulled off at Molino Basin where David lead a discussion on the Oak – Grassland biome (4,000′ – 5,600′) and Oak Woodland (5,000′ – 6,000′) biome. Here he used posters and the natural taurine to cover; Trees: Emory Oak, Mexican Blue Oak, Silverleaf Oak, Arizona White Oak, Alligator Juniper, Western Soapberry, Border Pinyon Pine: Shrubs: Mountain Yucca, Soap-Tree Yucca, Shindagger Agave, Sotol, Golden-flowered Agave, Beargrass; Grasses: AZ Panic Grass, Blue Grama, Sideoats Grama, Cane beard grass, Spidergrass, Bush Muhly, Bull Grass, Lehmann Lovegrass; Oak – Grassland: Oaks & Junipers, Chihuahua Pine, Buckbrush, Golden-flowered Agave, Mt. Yucca.

Biomes of the CatalinasOur next stop was along the highway near Bear Creek to discuss the Riparian Corridor (Not a biome) where we found AZ Sycamore, AZ Walnut, Gooding Willow, Fremont Cottonwood, Velvet Ash, AZ Cypress, AZ Alder.

Biomes of the CatalinasAt the approximately the 5,400″ elevation we stopped at the Middle Bear Picnic/Green Mountain Trail Head to learn about Pine-Oak Woodland biome where the dominant plants are AZ Pine, Chihuahua Pine Silverleaf Oak, AZ White Oak, Emory Oak, Black Cherry, Alligator Juniper.

Biomes of the CatalinasNext, we stopped at Windy Point Vesta(6,500′), a popular place for tourists driving up the scenic Catalina Highway. At this location, David talked about the Chaparral biome, which includes Silver Oak, AZ Madrone, Border Pinyon Pine, Alligator Juniper, Manzanita, Golden-flowered Agave, Beargrass, and Buckbrush.

Biomes of the CatalinasAt the 19.3-mile highway marker (7,825′), David leads a discussion on the Pine Forest biome where the dominant plants are  AZ Pine, SW White Pine, Ponderosa Pine and occasional Douglas-Fir.

Biomes of the CatalinasAs you can see, David used live plant specimens on his posters.

Biomes of the CatalinasEver wonder how Mt. Lemmon got its name? The highest point in the Santa Catalina Mountains (9,152′) was named after Sara Plummer Lemmon, a respected botanist from New Gloucester, Maine, who arrived in Arizona after living in coastal California. Her Arizona fate was sealed when she attended a botany lecture in 1876 led by her future husband, John Gill Lemmon, and the whirlwind romance was on. After four years of courtship, the two wed and worked together cataloging the flora of the West, which would lead them to the Coronado National Forest in the southern section of what was then the Arizona Territory.

Biomes of the CatalinasA discussion on the last biome in our tour, Mixed Conifer Forest (Above 8,000′) took place at Bear Wallow (8,100). Here David illustrated the common plants in the Mixed Conifer Forest: Ponderosa Pine, AZ Pine, SW White Pine, Douglas-Fir, White Fir, Quaking Aspen; Silverleaf, Netleaf, and Gambel Oaks; Rocky Mountain, Big Tooth, and Box Elder Maples.

In hindsight, I wish I had done both photography and video of the biomes tour. Near the end of the tour, I did think about doing a video clip, which is what follows.

Note: Much of the copy in this posting is from David Dean’s handout, Biomes of the Santa Catalina Mountains

 

 

 

Learning About Nature Is Fun!   2 comments

Park Ranger and Kid-0108 blogPark Ranger and Kid at Mesa Verde National Park — Image by kenne

During our recent visit to Mesa Verde National Park, I watched a Park Ranger at a demo table doing something we as naturalists do at Sabino Canyon to education visitors to the canyon — couldn’t pass up taking a photo and watching the child’s reaction.

Wild for the Wilderness (1 of 1)-67-2 blogSabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalist at Sabino Canyon — Image by kenne

Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists (SCVN) programs and nature demonstrations start in October.

— kenne

“Children the world over have a right to a childhood filled with beauty, joy, adventure, and companionship.
They will grow toward ecological literacy if the soil they are nurtured in is rich with experience, love, and good examples.”

— Alan Dyer

 

 

hiking friends — black and white in shades of gray   Leave a comment

Box Springs TrailImage by kenne

friends hiking Box Camp
naturalists lead the way
for fellow hikers 
      always stay on the marked trail
            black and white in shades of gray

-- kenne

Top Of The Mountain   Leave a comment

Mt. Lemmon Panorama- blog Meadow Trail on Mt. Lemmon — Panorama by kenne

Profound commitment to a dream does not
confine or constrain: it liberates.
Even a difficult, winding path can lead
to your goal if you follow it to the end.

— Paulo Coelho

 

 

 

Extruded Art & Snyder Poem, “Water”   1 comment

Checkerspot-2856 extruded art blog IIImage by kenne

Water

Pressure of sun on the rockslide
whirled me in a dizzy hop-and-step descent,
Pool of pebbles buzzed in a Juniper shadow,
Tiny tongue of a this-year rattlesnake flicked,
I leaped, laughing for little boulder-color coil —
Pounded by heat raced down the slabs to the creek
Deep tumbling under arching walls and stuck
Whole head and shoulders in the water:
Stretched full on cobble—ears roaring
Eyes open aching from the cold and face a trout.

— Gary Snyder
“I am a poet who has preferred not to distinguish in poetry between nature and humanity.”

Hiking The Aspen Loop In The Santa Catalina Mountains — Photo Essay   6 comments

Hikers-2840 blog IIHikers in a New Aspen Grove Up from Marshall Gulch On Mt. Lemmon — Image by kenne

In 2003 the Aspen Fire destroyed many homes in Summerheaven and thousands of acres on Mt. Lemmon. Last Friday the Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists led hike was on the Aspen Loop that goes through some of the areas destroyed, now recovered by new aspen and pine groves. 

A precursor to the Aspen Fire was the Bollock Fire, 2002 in the eastern part of the Catalinas. Parts of the area burned in 2002 is now experiencing the Burro Fire that started Friday and has now consumed 9,000 acres. The Burro Fire is one of a half-dozen wildfires in the Coronado National Forest. Did I say it is hot and very dry in southeastern Arizona?

— kenne

Slideshow images by kenne

 

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