Thursday, August 4, 2016

The Adventure Continues

It's been a couple of days since I last gave an account of my artistic vacation adventure.  We have been pretty busy exploring the hills around the Ely, Nevada area.  When I'm not being bounced around in the front seat of our F250, I'm making meals or thinking about my art.  Let me catch you up on both our exploring and the drawing and painting I have been working on the past few days.
Our trusty Ford truck.  You've carried us to lots of amazing places!

Sunday, after church, we took the drive that had been suggested to us called "Success Loop".   This drive was amazing.  It is 33 miles long and starts a few miles past the small town of McGill and ends about 15 miles outside of Ely.  You literally are making a giant loop through the mountain range east of Ely.    The road is paved for a short distance on both ends, but then turns into a typical gravel road.  When we traveled it there would be no issue with a car driving the loop but I had read that at times when it rains the road can become flooded and high clearance vehicles are recommended.  Since we own three 4WD vehicles most roads are never a concern to us.

Success Loop Road
Nevada is open range country so we did have to stop several time for some "Slow Elk" in the road and were privileged to also have 3 deer sightings.  Several miles up the road, as you gain altitude, you find yourself in a large grove of mature aspen trees.  The sound that the slightest breeze makes passing through those leaves is so amplified and serene.   The light of the sun reflecting down through their filtered branches just dances and twinkles and you know exactly why these trees are called "quakies".  We have already started making plans to return to this area in October just to see these trees dressed in their fall colors.  If you are anywhere near this area, you must take a couple of hours out to drive this loop!

Awesomeness along the way!

I think we drove out to Garnet Hill on Monday and then again on Wednesday.  We found a number of really nice sized garnets down the hill just by walking around.  I think we figured out that there are plenty of garnets for those that have the patients to walk around looking for them.  The professional garnet hunters bring all the tools and toil in the dirt, breaking open piles of rocks while breaking a sweat and their back in the process.  I just want to fill up a little vile or jar to sit on my shelf.  I'm happy with the little ones.  I'm sure in the next two weeks we will go up there several more times to add to our collection.

Cave Lake
Today we drove out to Cave Lake to just scout out the location.  Some of our kids are coming up for a visit and I wanted to see if this might be a place for us all to enjoy an afternoon.  We didn't pay the fee to enter the park but the scenery just from the 15 min parking zone at the entrance was breathtaking.  I'm sure it is well worth the $5 for a Nevada resident to pay to drive on around the lake.

My little creative corner, complete with a large cup of McDonald's coffee of course.

Because I fancy myself to be somewhat of an artist and because this is predominately an art blog, I thought I might share a picture of my little art corner I have set up in our camper.  Small but efficient, I have all my pens, markers and colored pencils close at hand.  There isn't much room for my acrylic paints so they are store outside in a tub.

Artistic Journal entry detailing my owl encounter

This week I was privileged to have a for real sighting of a great horned owl.  This magnificent creature was perched on a branch a few space down from our camper and his giant yellow eyes were focused on me.  For sometime we just stood there staring at each other.  It was amazing.  I have since  been obsessed with those eyes.  I did a journal page in my artistic journal about it and now 

Sorry for the cell phone picture
I have started a 10 x 20 inch acrylic painting of a full bodied owl. I'm loving how he is turning out so far.  The funny thing is that inside our small camper trailer he seems to be staring at me with those huge yellow eyes no matter where I move.  Of course in 23' you can't move very far.  

 He will be sitting in a pinyon pine tree among pine needles and a perhaps a green pine cone or two. Similar to the ones I included in my artistic journal a week ago.   You can see he looks to be patiently waiting for me to pick up my paint brushes and get on to finishing up the details.  Maybe he will be finished for my next blog post.  You will have to come back and visit me to see for yourself.

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