Southeastern Arizona, May 2000
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Sabino Canyon by Day
(Click any photo throughout to see a larger version)
I'll just get all the suspense over with here and tell you that we did not see any Gila monsters or regal horned lizards or rattlesnakes or other rare herps the next morning when I returned to Sabino Canyon, this time accompanied by John, Brenda, and Monica. Roger had warned me in advance that this part of the U.S. has been suffering from drought for a few years now, and the very dry winters result in many fewer critters out and about during the spring. So it wasn't the very best time to visit Arizona in search of herps, but we had a great time anyway. Ooh, the scenery, she is so beautiful!
Sabino Canyon has a wondrous array of cacti of all shapes and sizes. It is a popular weekend destination for Tucsonians, but most of them stick to the main road, so it's easy to get away from the crowds.
Here's another charming young desert spiny lizard giving me a wary look.
Never let it be said that I never take pictures of mammals, or, as Roger calls them, rattlesnake chow. I believe this is a round-tailed ground squirrel chewing up the scenery. Cute enough, for a mammal.
Finally, just as we were preparing to leave Sabino Canyon and start the voyage back to California, one last roadrunner showed up for the festivities. You gotta love the attitude of this guy, mohawk hairstyle and all.
John Sullivan
June 22, 2000

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