This is the first time that I’ve gone to the Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C. and it was beautiful! The cherry blossoms were simply spectacular, and walking around the Tidal Basin was quite an adventure. There were enchanting views of tree after tree in full bloom. Lots of other people were walking on the paths but there were plenty of opportunities to see the blossoms and take as many pictures as you wanted. It was a cloudy day and chilly as well, but since snow had been predicted it was a relief to just have cloudy skies with no precipitation. I bought a wool hat at Union Station to wear for the day and it helped me stay warm. Too bad I didn’t buy some gloves as well! I couldn’t help but take hundreds of pictures and my hands were cold, but it was worth it.
I’m not sure how far I walked but this was one of the views from the path:
Some of the trees were quite old and had interesting trunks.
It was a day I’ll always remember. I’d like to go back next year, preferably on a warm, sunny day!
Viewing the monument
There have been some interesting variations in the weather this January. First it was cold and snowy, then it got warm and over the weekend there was a tornado warning. Now it’s cold again and it might snow in a few days. After all this I’m hoping for an early spring! I’m going to Florida (Orlando) in a few days and it will definitely be warmer than it is here. I’ve checked the extended weather forecast and it should be warm and sunny while I’m there. I’m looking forward to seeing some flowers too. They are always so cheerful and provide a hopeful reminder that spring will be returning, and the sooner the better!
What it looked like last week with snow:
Flowers that will (hopefully) be here soon…
Last weekend we had some snow and since it’s December it seemed like a good time for it. After all, it’s almost Christmas. However, when the sun came out a few days later it warmed up and now the snow is gone. That one cold, snowy Saturday turned out to be a perfect time for staying home, writing Christmas cards and having a cup of hot chocolate! I’m also enjoying the displays and decorations I’ve seen this month that are so cheerful for the holidays. These pictures are of scenes that I’ve admired from past Decembers. Sometimes it’s nice to stop and simply enjoy the season, especially when a little winter weather comes your way.
This time I’m talking about Red Canyon in Utah. I passed it on the road to Bryce Canyon and it looked so interesting I stopped there for a look around on the way back from Bryce. Red Canyon has some moderately easy walks and hikes, so I walked on one of the shorter trails. I liked this because I wanted to enjoy the views and take pictures without having to think about steep drop-offs! I even saw some wildflowers along the way, which I always enjoy wherever I am. Red Canyon had free admission and parking so I’d like to spend more time there the next time I’m in that area.
Some of the views:
Along the trail
Where does this go?
Walk up to this…
Drive through this!
And of course the flowers.
I’d like to say it was a serious hike rather that a walk, but I was so busy looking around and taking pictures it turned out to be more of a leisurely stroll! For instance, I saw the Bright Angel Trail and all the people starting off on their adventures, but after only a few steps I realized how narrow the trail was. I quickly decided that the Rim Trail was enough of a challenge for me. There are guard rails in many places on the trail and I was always happy to see them.
Here are some of the views from these trails.
What a view!
A must-read sign
I chose the Rim Trail
View from the trail
I wanted to see the Grand Canyon and keep at a safe distance at the same time. As a result of doing this I was able to stop, stand back and see views like these.
The sky was a brilliant blue throughout my trip to Arizona and Utah. When you add that to the sunshine it made a perfect backdrop to some unforgettable places. Every day the mountains and canyons were even more remarkable because of the beautiful September weather. Here is an example from Zion National Park:
Later that day the clouds disappeared.
Here are some other scenes, including a friendly little bird at the Grand Canyon that posed for a picture for me.
Grand Canyon shuttle
Red Canyon, Utah
Grand Canyon view
Grand Canyon bird
You can revisit the past with this famous road and sign in Flagstaff, Arizona.
More adventures coming soon!
I just got back from a trip to Arizona and Utah, with stops at the Grand Canyon, Sedona, Zion, and Bryce Canyon. I also drove on Route 66 (now Historic 66) in Flagstaff, Arizona. There was a lot of driving involved (over 1000 miles) to get from place to place as well as a lot of walking/hiking on trails at the parks. Everything was gorgeous and the weather was warm – but not hot – and cooled down considerably after the sun went down.
Here is an overview of some of the places I visited, with more from each place coming soon!
Utah mountain scene
Grand Canyon sunrise
One of the nicest parts about summer is seeing all the flowers in bloom. Right now in my garden there are purple coneflowers, daisies, black-eyed Susans, bee balm, phlox and many other colorful flowers, all competing for space. Along with these plants are some interesting visitors such as butterflies, along with bumblebees and honey bees. One of my favorite herbs is lavender, and since there was so much rain this spring followed by sunshine they have really grown. Here is an assortment from my garden on a sunny day. I would have taken more pictures but I was chased away by a bee that didn’t want any humans around!
Garden in July
When I was in England this past March I spent most of my time in Kent. During the week I went to Rochester for a visit and it was a rainy day. I enjoyed visiting the Guildhall and the Cathedral but it was difficult to take many photos because of the weather. I had to find an entryway or another sheltered spot where I could put down my umbrella and take pictures. I didn’t end up venturing too far from where there were buildings and sidewalks. Still, I thought it would be nice to return on a sunny day because it was a charming place.
Look up to see this!
Castle in the rain
Gloomy yet dramatic
Along the sidewalk
Later in the week I had that opportunity so I took a train back to Rochester to see it in the sunshine. It was so different to see everything on a bright (and breezy) day! I took pictures of some of the same places I had just been to show the contrast. And even though it was March there were flowers so I’ve included a picture of them too. It was really interesting to see what a difference sunshine and blue sky made!
A different view in the sun
A different look
Bright and sunny
Contrast with the blue sky
It isn’t quite spring yet but it won’t be long now! There have been some warm days recently and I’ve seen lots of cheery yellow daffodils in bloom, but because it is early March the days can be chilly. Still, it’s only a few weeks until the beginning of spring and then we’ll be seeing this:
Where does this path go…
Chelsea Flower Show scene
I’m going to England later this month and I’m looking forward to many new adventures.