Day trip north on Saturday of last week…US Highway 89 from north of Wickenburg, through Yarnell, into and out of Prescott, brushing up against Ash Fork, heading west on I-40 and skirting Kingman, and then back down US 93 to US 60 and “home” again….
It was good to see cottonwood trees along roadways again.
Maybe Argemone pleiacantha, Southwestern Pricklypoppy…maybe, quite possibly…also found alongside the roadway…high desert travels.
Fat, fluffy clouds are a welcome sight in the high and low deserts…even if they are accompanied by high winds and the general ugliness of broken branches and occasionally uprooted trees and downed fences; they’re seasonal treasures that truly freshen and sweeten the air and leave a rich verdure in their passing.
Windows down on the truck, just me and my thoughts…green rambling forests…the smell of warming juniper on the breeze….
Someone received the distant rain…rather, it was received somewhere, maybe not where any people could feel it…although, by the time I arrived in Prescott, further north and west of where we see the rain in the above image, I did receive a little of it…something like 13-17 drops on my windscreen…a regular downpour.
An anvil cloud in preparation, above, is usually a good hint that rain is coming.
This section of US 89 was new to me. I’d driven it plenty between Flagstaff and south of Salt Lake, but never this stretch.
…wide horizons with a lot of green in between…
…and then out of the mountains into the high desert flat-lands north of Prescott…
…raw desert with compelling geologic formations…
…some kind of caramel ball wildflowers along the roadway…
…and southern clouds that didn’t leave a drop in their passing….
Heading home and slow-going with the west-bound traffic at exactly 6:30 pm yesterday…with a good view of the approaching storm.
Eleven minutes later in the below photograph…wasn’t difficult driving, but it was hard to make quality one-handed photographs with the truck blowing side to side….
Very often we see these desert wind storms, dust storms, or haboobs making a lot of noise and throwing a bunch of crap in the air with not much else happening…
…or not happening in our particular part of town, anyway. It’s often that one side of town gets the dust and another side gets the rain….
So it was nice to finally see some rain drops populate the windscreen on the truck…heading north on the 303 now from the I-10…at 6:55 pm in the below photo.
Wipers are coming on soon….
Looking west toward the White Tank Mountains in the below photo…huge dumping of rain….
The above photo (kind of sucks) is nowhere near as dramatic as this image from the Washington Post in July of 2016, but it’s still pretty cool…rain bomb…micro-burst….
Broken trees blowing onto the freeway off ramp…getting close to home….
It’s 7:06 pm in the above photo…36 minutes since the first photo above….
A welcome river of rain washing down our neighborhood street above….
And this is the morning after…two broken tree tops…which is very minimal compared to what I found in other places in the neighborhood…huge trees that must have stood for close to 20 years blown over and crashed through walls and into houses…other big ones uprooted and laying into the street…beautiful mesquite trees in the park toppled over….
Wonderful summer rains in the desert….
approaching the end of a long day on the road, i saw clouds over the mountains and foothills and cinder-cones north of flagstaff, it appeared as though it might rain and i even thought i smelled it on the air as i came nearer to the mountain town, looking south and west at what was north and west of the settlement, i didn’t notice a wind, but maybe that is water falling aslant from the darker sky, above a fence-line dividing the earth in someone’s imagination
I made these images from atop some of our local desert hills, Sunday, looking west, then north, and then west again as the clouds rolled in and did their thing….