Jul 212014

Jumpup canyon Kaibab National Forest ArizonaI have never experienced such a remote and isolated place surrounded by a palpable silence as Jumpup Point, a narrow peninsula of land jutting out into Grand Canyon.

The drive

Rocky FR201 Kaibab National Forest Arizona44 miles of gravel road in the Kaibab National Forest removed me from civilization.  The last 10 miles along FR201 are a brutal drive over a rocky road that appears not to have seen a grader for a while.  It took me 1.5 hours avoiding the potential tire punching pointy rocks and crawling over slickrock boulders.  But the reward at the end was entirely worth it.

Meadow FR22 Kaibab National Forest ArizonaFrom high plateau pines and meadows a drop of 2500 feet (762 meters) in elevation brought me through the Juniper and Pinyon to a low elevation of heat and seeking shade amongst the sparse desert environment.

FR236 Kaibab National Forest ArizonaDefinitely need a high clearance vehicle to make the last 10 miles.

Being there

Jumpup canyon, point & beyond Grand Canyon ArizonaI went alone to be with my cluttered brain thinking about the future, or at least what I plan to do at the end of this summer season. Yet what I discovered was just to be in the NOW of this most amazing place.

Esplande from Jumpup Point Grand Canyon ArizonaIt took a while to settle in to this absolute silence surrounded by a canyon so vast.  I felt disoriented to my place here.  What is the name of that point, drainage and temple?  Hey, I’m into geography.

Jumpup trail Grand Canyon ArizonaYet after I set up camp and had dinner I finally settled in and watched the late sun rays glow off canyon walls and create shadows in the depths.

Esplande from Jumpup Point Grand Canyon ArizonaNo signs of human activity within the many miles of sight.  The western wind brought a scent of dry desert.

Shadow over Colorado River canyon from Jumpup Point Grand Canyon ArizonaI talked out loud to break the silence yet felt intruded upon by the distant sound of an occasional jet which I could not even see.

Sundog from Jumpup Point Kaibab National Forest ArizonaPre-sunset a sundog appeared high above mountains on the distant horizon.

Sunset from Jumpup Point Kaibab National Forest ArizonaAnd as sunset blazed across the western sky a sense of calm finally came to me.

I was HERE, NOW, and that’s all I needed to be.

Foto Friday Fun 68

 Posted by on July 18, 2014  Foto Friday Fun
Jul 182014

This week’s Foto Friday Fun features 6 images chosen by readers from my photo archives.  Very heavy in elephants from South Africa this week which is appropriate because today is Nelson Mandela’s birthday and people of the world are being urged to give 67 minutes of their time to better the world we live in.  And trust me, if we were more like elephants this Would be a better world.

01 40 Cool house at Porto Cito Baja MX fff68 (1024x692)Yogi chose #40 because it “just popped into my head so I’m going with it.  When a dear friend suggested we go to Baja, Mexico for a month during winter 2005 that’s what I did, go with it.  I towed her 5th-wheel to San Felipe where we parked on a friend’s lot for a month and explored the area.   This closed up house perched on the edge of the Gulf in Puerto Cito called to me.  There were several empty and For Sale houses here.  Unfortunately the road was more potholes than pavement and very slow going even in our friend’s jeep.

02 DSC_7574 Elephants at the waterhole Addo Elephant NP SA fff68 (1024x948)Bo chose #7574, “just because.”  She gets my favorite South African animal, plus what could be more adorable than those youngsters.  The interactions amongst elephants absolutely entrances me.  Hopefully I’ll get a chance to spend more time observing the elephants at Addo Elephant National Park.

03 DSC_0472 Elephant Pilanesberg GR SA fff68 (1024x718)Sherry chose #472 and also gets an elephant, a lone bull at Pilanesberg Game Reserve.  Didn’t get to see as many every day here as at Addo.  Guess I’m spoiled.

04 DSC_7777 Elephants Addo Elephant NP SA fff68 (1024x678)Elaine chose #7777.  And it’s more elephants, back at Addo, and some warthogs.  Seems the matriarchal herd is leaving the water hole as this lone bull approaches.

05 DSC_9000 Twee Rivieren camp Kgalagadi TP SA gfb fff68 (1024x678)Jo chose #9000 which takes us to one of her favorite South African Parks, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park.  This is our camp at Twee Rivieren near the southern entrance.  I hope to return here but next time with 4×4.

06 DSC_9939 Marsh terrapin Mankwe Dam Pilanesberg GR SA fff68 (1024x678)Diane chose #9939 and I’ll bet she’s experienced this scene of Marsh terrapin hanging out around the bird hide on Mankwe Dam in Pilanesberg Game Reserve.

07 DSC_0067 Hippos Pilanesburg GR SA fff68 (1024x678)Jonker chose #67 for the number of years Nelson Mandela spent in public working for the betterment of South Africa.  Today is Mandela’s birthday.  I guess the only connection is that Pilanesberg Game Reserve is in South Africa.

The United Nations officially declared 18 July as Nelson Mandela International Day in November 2009, recognizing Mandela’s “values and his dedication to the service of humanity” and acknowledging his contribution “to the struggle for democracy internationally and the promotion of a culture of peace throughout the world”.

Celebrated across the globe in honor of the late statesman’s birthday on July 18th, the day gives everyone the opportunity to emulate Mandela’s role as public servant.

Individuals, groups and corporates are challenged to give 67 minutes of their time on the day – one minute for every year of Mandela’s public service – to take action to change the world for the better and, in doing so, to help build a global movement for good.

08 Nelson Mandella R67 Art The Voting Line Port Elizabeth SA fff68 (1024x667)My choice this week in honor of Mandela is the Voting line seen when Jonker toured me through Port Elizabeth.  I like to think I take action to change the world for the better every day I work as a Park Ranger talking with visitors about what we can do to make the world a better place to live.  But because it’s my day off today, I’m going to sit on the edge of the canyon and think about what more I can do.  How about you?

Thank you for joining in Foto Friday Fun where readers choose a number from my archives and I share the corresponding photo and a story.   To join in the fun for
next week leave a number between 01 and 9993 in a comment and maybe see your chosen image next week.

Do you have a favorite from this week?

I have so many photos to share from this recent journey in South Africa.  So as I label them I’ll post every 100th image on the Geogypsy Facebook page where you can follow along.

Capturing the present for future memories of the past