This week’s photo challenge is “Winter”, and winds up the July photo challenge collection of seasons. I love the beauty of winter. I can sit at my computer and browse winter scenes all day, from my office, in Arizona. You see, it’s not the winter I don’t like, it’s the cold. >grin< Still and all, I have a collection of winter images to share. I brave the cold weather during the holiday season and return to North Dakota to be with family over Christmas. The above image was captured along the Red River on a late December day.
This week, Ann-Christine asks us to share our winter thoughts and experiences. She writes in part, “…So, your winter is not mine, my winter is not yours. Let’s enjoy the differences! Being different and different experiences give us more strength and brings variety to our lives. This week – Winter rules.” You can view her challenge post here. I “changed up” the challenge a bit since my place in Arizona doesn’t really have winter. It has a flowery spring, some years, other than that, it’s the Sonoran Desert, unchanging except for the temperature. Instead, I share winter as experienced at my North Dakota home and along the route to Arizona.
After spending 40 winters in Minnesota and North Dakota, I found a way to spend my winters in a warmer climate, but the lure of family and friends over the holidays is strong. Only once since my retirement did we not make the trek to North Dakota for Christmas. On one of those Christmas stays, we went to visit some friends in nearby Horace, North Dakota, I saw the long shadows cast by the setting sun and stepped outside with my cell phone to capture the sunset through the trees.
On a January day, we traveled through Colorado Springs and stopped at a rest area along Interstate 25. The United States Air Force Acadamy airport is nestled at the base of famed Pike’s Peak, one of the most famous mountains in Colorado’s beautiful Rocky Mountain range. The wind was blowing strong high up on the mountain creating the blowing snow you can see along the ridges at the peak. At ground level, you can see by the windsock, it was a bit breezy that day. Pilots will recognize that windsock and be able to estimate the wind to be around 15 miles per hour or so. That isn’t nearly enough wind to create the blowing snow on the mountain top.
While we are in Colorado, we will venture north to Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park’s Sprague Lake. It was a cold day and parts of the path around the lake were icy. We ventured around the lake until the ice became too treacherous to navigate and walked back the way we came.
We don’t think of snow and Arizona in the same context, but in the high desert around Flagstaff, the high altitude provides plenty of winter activities. As you might imagine, I’ve only been “passing through” on our way to warmer places when we have seen snow on the route along the way.
Near Bryce Canyon, Utah, the road through Red Canyon in the Dixie National Forest provides ample opportunity to capture winter scenes. Thanks again to the team who works each week to provide us with interesting challenges allowing us to share our favorite images.