Dec 15: Snow overnight in the higher elevations. Made for a beautiful drive up into the Zion valley & Mount Carmel beyond. Quite dramatic when a bit of sun finally peeked through a few breaks in the clouds.
We are, however, sick of the freezing temps at night & even with a heated hose, not sure if the water will be running. THIS IS NOT WHAT WE SIGNED UP FOR when fleeing from Canada! Poor old Mr. Tyrian (our oldest cat, mostly now blind) who doesn’t sleep with us, is always cold, and with not much meat on his bones (backbone sticks up) we feel sorry for him. SO: decided to get the hell out of there & go to Vegas.
Dec. 17: Drizzling as we leave, temp just above zero. Stopped in St. George to have our rig looked at due to another circuit breaker switching while we tried to watch TV & make popcorn. This is one of the issues we had before & they replaced the microwave – but that is obviously not the problem. Nonetheless, we were back on the road before noon & continued on – only a 2 hour drive from there. Added Great-tailed Grackle & Brewer’s Blackbird at our lunch stop.
When we arrived at Sam’s Town RV park, the sun broke through and the temp was about 15 C! Saw a Northern Mockingbird fly by as we drove into town. We took off our coats & got settled. Oh, it was so great to feel warm! The cats obviously really enjoyed it also & hunkered down on the bed for a cat nap. We did a bit of shopping then went to our favorite Mexican restaurant in Sam’s hotel for dinner. After worrying about freezing conditions, various RV concerns, etc. last night & not a very good sleep for either of us – then travelling all day – we went right to bed. Slept 12 hours!
Dec. 18: A bit rainy today, so we both worked.
Dec. 19: Bright, sunny day though windy & cool – so went birding in the Henderson Bird Viewing area just down the hwy – and added quite a few species to our list, though nothing totally new. Costa’s Hummingbird is our first hummer, then Black-tailed Gnatcatcher, Verdin, Black Phoebe, Gambel’s Quail, Cooper’s Hawk, White-crowned & Song Sparrows, Greater Yellowlegs, many common waterfowl, but never found our Crissal Thrasher. Our waiter from the Mexican place at the hotel clued us in when we were here last Feb, so we knew where to search. While there, a local news & camera crew were filming for an article on the Xmas bird count – so they interviewed me as well! I was on the local news as “Lois Lang & her husband from Canada looking for a Crissal Thrasher – HA! Here’s what one looks like – though we’ve not yet succeeded in getting a good photo ourselves (this one from the web). Such a great bill!
Dec. 20: Another bright, sunny day – but no wind. Just perfect. Saw several new species as well as several looks at the thrasher (still no good photo op’s). Added the Anna’s Hummingbird, as well as Bewick’s Wren & Western Kingbird. When we got back we washed our rig – what a lot of work with Bill having to climb the ladder every few feet – washing with hot soapy water then rinsing. But what a difference from the salty/dirt covered vehicle.
Dec. 21: More additions to our bird list with a great photo of a Cooper’s Hawk, some Avocets & a pair of Least Sandlpipers. Took our car into a wash place since we decided it was too much work to do ourselves – but waxed, vacuumed, cleaned the leather & vinyl – so both vehicles glowing! Only 2 more days here – we leave Xmas eve day for Quartzsite, AZ where we’ll be until Jan 1st. So MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!