Fire Cloud...
An irregular marking on the exterior of Native American pottery: usually resulting from burning fuel coming in direct contact with the vessel during firing

Saturday, 15 April 2006

Saguaro by Moonlight

Saguaro National Park (East) – 15 April, 2006

We are camped in saguaro cactus country in the vast Sonoran Desert, about 20 miles west of Tucson. The saguaros are giants, reaching 30 or 40 feet over their 200-year lifespan.

This area has a lot to see. The Davis-Montham air base is in Tucson. The Air Force mothballs obsolete airplanes there because of the desert climate. The Pima Air Museum is next to the airbase. Pima is the largest museum of its type in the world. We plan to hit it on the way out in the morning.

Here are a few Saguaro National Park pictures. There are some interesting saguaro moonlight silhouettes and also confused coyote hunting in a parking lot.

Kitt Peak Observatory is the largest collection of optical, infra-red, radio and solar telescopes in the world. It's in the dry desert air on a 7,000 foot peak 50 miles from light sources. One scope is four meters in diameter, but there are larger ones elsewhere. We took a tour and snapped a few Kitt Peak pictures.

The Desert Museum, just south of the park, is worth a visit. There are desert animals, minerals and flora on display. We arrived early and were lucky to watch the rattlesnakes swallowing white mice.

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