Archive for the ‘Sabino Canyon Dam’ Tag

Sabino Creek Dam Maskot   2 comments

Sabino Canyon Copper's Hawk1517 blogSabino Creek Dam Maskot (Cooper’s Hawk) — Image by kenne


Water Above Sabino Canyon Creek Dam   Leave a comment

Hutch's Pool blogAbove Sabino Canyon Dam (When There Is Water) in the Santa Catalina Mountains
— Image by kenne

Mountains are the beginning
and the end of all natural scenery.

— John Ruskin

Foam At The Base Of Sabino Canyon Dam   1 comment

Foam On Creek (1 of 1) blogFoam at the Base of the Sabino Canyon Dam Created by A Natural Surfactants, DOC. (January 21, 2015) — Image by kenne

The foam at the base of the Sabino Canyon Dam is a natural surfactants called DOC (dissolved organic carbon). DOC is a food supplement, supporting growth of microorganisms and plays an important role in the global carbon cycle through the microbial loop. DOC comes from the decomposition of a variety of plant material including algae and aquatic plants, but also the leaves from trees that line the creek.  The amount of foam at the base will depend on the flow rate over the dam, which might explain less foam this morning. 


Capturing The Moment — Paper Wasp On Its Nest   3 comments

Ned's Walk (1 of 1)-7 Paper Wasp blogA Paper Wasp Nest Located near the Sabino Canyon Dam (January 21, 2015) — Image by kenne

Wasp moving slowly

Winter temps in the forties

On a desert morn.

— kenne

Capturing The Moment — Coulter’s Hibiscus (Desert Rose)   Leave a comment

Coulter's hibiscus Blossom (1 of 1) blogCoulter’s Hibiscus (Desert Rosemallow) Growing On A Rocky Slope Near The Sabino Canyon Dam — Image by kenne

Desert rose,
Unveil us the secret of life
As the only softness will survive when life is so hard
Soft as water, gentleness not easily broken, a lesson
The smell of you may call thousands souls back
Among of them most will care, a little will scare
You don’t cry when the evil hands break you a part
After all you lead them safe from lost
Brokenness they made,
But your fragrance lingering in hands
Haunting them back

Rare persona… in you desert rose
In the sandy ocean, you devote for better life,
Amazing grace based on your strongest will
Days without rain while the sun vapor the strength
Resistant but beauty even the land is burning thee
Root of hopes now stronger to find water deeper
True charisma, exist in you, desert rose

— from Desert Rose by Unknown Soul


Water Is Now Flowing In Sabino Canyon Quenching A Giant Thurst   1 comment

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-2 blogVisitors to Sabino Canyon were pleased to see water in the creek, the first time since the spring.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-3 blogThe water for now is flowing over the Bear Canyon low-water crossing.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-4 blogWater is also going over the low-water crossing below the Sabino Canton dam.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-5 blogWater rushing over Sabino Canyon dam.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-6 blogSabino Canyon Dam

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-7 blogSabino Canyon Dam

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-8 blogWater rushing over the boulders at the base of the dam.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-9 blogThe area along the creek has been so dry that even the willows near the dam have dropped their leaves,
looking more like late fall rather August.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-10 blogThis ash tree, home to a Cooper’s hawk nest has also lost a lot of its leaves.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-11 blogThe water is providing a welcome relief from this year’s draught.

Water in the creek (1 of 1)-12 blogThe creek will continue to flow as long as the Catalina Mountains receive Monsoon rains.
— Images by kenne

“A giant thirst is a great joy when quenched in time.”

― Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire

“I’ll Take Spring On The Rocks”   5 comments

Ned's Nature Walk 02-12-14-0027 blog“Spring On The Rocks” (Sabino Creek near the dam.) — Image by kenne

“When you sit in silence long enough, you learn that silence has a motion.
It glides over you without shape or form, exactly like water.
Its color is silver.
And silence has a sound you hear only after hours of wading inside it.
The sound is soft, like flute notes rising up, like the words of glass speaking.
Then there comes a point when you must shatter the blindness of its words, the blindness of its light.”

― Anne Spollen, The Shape of Water

Special V.I.P. Hike For James — A Five-Year Old Naturalist Is Born   8 comments

Sabino Canyon-9431 blog

The kid loves to hike and also has an eye for skirts! ( When he saw her really picked-up his pace.) Last Monday, James, mom, grandma and I went on a three-mile hike/nature walk in Sabino Canyon. All bias aside, he was my best student yet — interested, attentive, lots of questions and very good at answering mine. 

On our way back, James took the lead and proceeded to mimic me — “Now over here is a blah, blah, blah. And here is a blah-blah cactus.” He didn’t always remember the names, but he was something else when it comes to having my style down. Too bad I didn’t get it on video.

Three miles is a good distance for a five-year old. We hiked to the Sabino Canyon dam and back. His only complaint was that we didn’t do more climbing. Of course, his mimicking by body language was a not so subtle way to show he was getting tired of my naming everything along the trail — he had all the moves down pat.


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Old Tucson-9463 blog

Photos & Video by kenne

Capturing The Moment — Sonoran Desert Toads   1 comment

Sabino Canyon & Sonoran Desert ToadsThe summer desert rains wake up the Sonoran Desert Toads. — Image by kenne

Capturing The Moment — Little Lemonhead   Leave a comment

Ned's Nature Walk -- 01-1-09-13Little Lemonhead — Image by kenne

Winter brings its own beauty, but flowers are not usually part of the picture. In the Santa Catalina foothills of the Sonoran Desert there exist a plant with small yellow heads with narrow yellow rays. The above image was taken yesterday in the Sabino Canyon riparian area near the Sabino Canyon Dam.

Another image of this plant, by Ned Harris, can be viewed on Ann Green’s blog, Sabino Canyon.


Sky Above, Water Below In The Canyon   2 comments

SCVN Nature Walk 01-03-12_20120104_1172 Sky Above Water Below blog

“Sky Above, Water Below” — image by kenne

Sky above,

Water below,

Or is it

The other way around —

It’s your call

In our upside-down



Now That There’s Water In The Creek, We Are Ready For The Season   5 comments

Phoneline 12-21-12

Maribeth's iPhone Photo

Maribeth’s iPhone Photo

Now a little over a week ago, we received rain in southern Arizona for the first time in months. The creek in Sabino Canyon had been dry for some time. Yes, there were a few pools here and there with a few gila chub, the native fish found in the creek, but no running water. For weeks I’ve had elementary school kids stand above the dam telling them they were “walking on water”, only that it was a few feet below the sand. It’s amazing how the desert begins to transform from the site of water running through the canyon — a site for dry eyes!

Then,  there is the sound of water causing one to rush down to the water-side, like a magical sound of the piper.

Yesterday, some of us were hiking through the Sabino Canyon riparian area enjoying the winter solstice colors along the creek — tis the season to be merry! 


Phoneline 12-21-12

Phoneline 12-21-12

Phoneline 12-21-12Images by kenne

When I Grow Up, I Want To Be As Good As Ned!   1 comment

Ned Harris is my Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalist (SCVN) mentor. He is also a super photographer. So, one might ask, why am I posting one of my photos with one of his photos? Yes, it does seem crazy! But, there is a “method to my madness.” 

First, I want to share an example Ned’s photo skills and urge you to visit his Flickr site (Ned Harris’ Photostream) to see more of the Gray Hawk pictured below and many other excellent raptors photos — he’s one of the best!

Second, as Ned knows, wildlife photography is all about being at the right place at the right time, and that’s not all luck. You have to help make things happen.

Yesterday we both were out trying to be in the “right place at the right time” — I in Sabino Canyon, Ned in Aravaipa Canyon. As I walked in the riparian area above the Sabino Canyon Dam, I saw a Copper’s Hawk above me. I quickly readied my camera to capture the moment — in a split second, I took the shot the hawk dove back and down away from me. But, to be correct, I wasn’t as ready as I should have been, which you can tell from the image below.

Ned, however, is driving down the road and sees a gray hawk on a telephone cable. As he slows down to pull over, he turns off the SUV engine to reduce noise, coming to a stop. Then, sliding over from the driver’s seat, he takes some stunning images with the camera in hand. 

Talk about “right place, right time,” but more importantly, he has the camera instinct to create those moments we all hope for when we put a camera in our hands. 

— kenne

Copper’s Hawk In Sabino Canyon — Image by kenne

Gray Hawk with Desert Spiny Lizard — Image by Ned Harris

Visualizing What Is No Longer There   1 comment

Image by kenne
(Last December I captured an image above the Sabino Canyon creek dam. Now the water is gone, but not in the image.
Since then I captured another image now that the water is gone. So, I decided to change the original image in my mind’s eye.)

Looking at water
Flowing over the spillway
Where streams have gone dry.


Capturing The Moment — Water In The Canyon   Leave a comment

Sabino Canyon Dam — Image by kenne

Water has returned to Sabino Creek.

Life is refreshed in the canyon.

Gila chub fish swim in the pools.

Two girls slide on dam boulders.

Lushness is abundant in the desert.




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