Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Mittry Lake and Yuma, AZ

We arrived at Mittry Lake on Saturday afternoon, and all the best lakeside sites were taken, but we found this one with a short walk to the water. Camping is free here for 10 days a year.
Mittry Lake...smooth water and will be good for kayaking.
A handicapped accessible jetty, one of several.
There is more camping space on a plateau overlooking the lake. We took the dogs for a walk to check it out.
There was a Lazydays RV get together here....Tina would have enjoyed.
Behind that camping area is some more calm water...sides are steep though, so not sure where one would launch a kayak.
View from there.

Saturday night sunset.

On Sunday we drove into Yuma and met forum friends Jenny and Dan and Anita for lunch. L to R: Anita, Beth, Dan, Jenny, me. Anita just happened to be in Yuma. Dan and Jenny spend their winters here. Found out too late that Sheila in Quartzite could have joined us.
Sunday afternoon people had left, so we moved to a site with a nice view of the lake.
Sunday night sunset from our site.
On Monday Beth drove us to Yuma to visit the historic Yuma Territorial Prison, circa 1800s. We picked up Jenny on the way.
Beth and Jenny reading about the old bridges and the mission on the hill on the other side.
About the mission.
Too bad they had to build those big water towers right behind the church...sort of ruins the view.
Jenny says this is a Bottlebrush bush. Bees like it.
The blooms turn pink as they age.
I took three pictures of this bird before we figured out it was fake!
The main guard tower of the prison was built over a water reservoir.
Through the Sally Port...
Into the museum. This is not one of the original buildings.
A little history.
112 prisoners died while incarcerated from a variety of causes. 110 of them are buried in the prison cemetery.
Some of the inmates...this one incarcerated for plural marriage.
Would you trust an inmate to be the prison's bookkeeper?
Some of the women prisoners were here because of being convicted of adultery.
We are all innocent of course: Beth,
Some became famous...in a notorious way.
The cell blocks.
Tape recorded voices of "inmates" told their own stories as you passed the cells.

The dentist's chair.
The dreaded "dark cell."

Small doorways are no problem for us short people.
After the prison closed, cells were used by the homeless, especially during the depression.
Don't worry...it's a fake rat.

Some of the original adobe.
Several of the cells have graffiti dated in the 1930s.
After touring the prison, we drove up to the mission.
A view of the old bridges and the prison to their left.

Ladder to the bell tower.
Fields of cabbage and lettuce grow around Yuma. There will be a big celebration next weekend at Yuma Lettuce Days.
On the way back to the campground, we pass fields of lettuce being harvested.
Trucks carrying cartons for fresh lettuce heads are being loaded in the fields.

Buses transport workers from across the border to harvest the fields.
Back at the lake, we are thinking about getting the kayaks out.
And look for some birds...

And so we did...
Belted kingfisher
The coots are scattering.
Looking for Rails in the tall reeds.
Great Egret moving on.
Such great hiding places...
Pied-billed Grebe
A different kind of bird....whirly bird.
Northern Shoveler

Re-shafted Flicker...female
Saw some while dog-walking too. Lots of Grackles...checking out the dumpster.
A pair of Great-tailed Grackles
On Tuesday morning a model airplane club was here.
Flying model float-planes that took off and landed on the water. 
 Coming to the dock.
Big boys and their toys. 
If the plane fails to make it back to the dock, there's a boat to go out and rescue it. 
After the show, Beth and I headed back out in our kayaks. 
 Coots and Great Egret with gull and cormorant in the background.
Cinnamon Teal 
Snowy Egret with Ruddy Duck in front. 
American Widgeon 
Widgeon and Coot 
Another camper all set for boondocking with multiple solar panels. 
A row of Ruddy Ducks 
Reed reflections 
I floated as far as the spillway, then turned around. 
Green Heron 
Northern Shoveler 
So many hiding places, but I couldn't find any of the Rails that are supposed to be common here, but not commonly seen...Sora, Virginia, nor the Yuma Clapper Rail. 
But did find this nice pair of Redheads. 
Yellow-rumped Warbler 
And that's all.
Tomorrow we travel on a little farther east into Arizona.

1 comment:

Due to recent spam in comments, new comments will now await approval before publishing.