Weekend Reflections – Sand Creek early on Sunday Morning

Sand Creek Reflections-Edit - Topaz Textures

On my weekend geocaching/camping trip last Sunday to Oklahoma’s beautiful Osage Hills State Park,  I got up early Sunday morning, struck camp and went down to Sand Creek and took a few pics. Fall is not very advanced here but that didn’t matter. The light Sunday morning was magical so I walked and hopped the rocks along the rapids of the creek taking pictures. With this one I was going to crop the the shadow selfie out but what the heck. I’ll leave it in.

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Twenty Four Hours in Osage County


Those of you who know me, know that I’m a Geocacher. The Tulsa Area Geocachers have an annual event in the Fall that they have at various State Parks in Oklahoma and this year they went to one of my favorite spots in Oklahoma, Osage Hills State Park up in Osage County. It is a beautiful wooded, hilly location with lots of camping spots and a friendly accommodating staff.

Heather and Logan stayed home. They hate geocaching. Hate might be too mild a word for their feelings about it. So I went by myself.


So it was fun finding the various temporary caches placed by the participants. Some of the people are diabolically clever.


Osage Hills is known for having the remnants of a Civilian Conservation Commission camp built back in the 1930’s to house young men who helped build the facilities still used at the park.


Here is a link to an interesting short blog post about the history of the CCC at Osage Hills. I learned that the camp was active from 1935 to 1941. Its amazing that so much remains 75 years after the camp ceased operation.


Mainly I wandered the trails. I didn’t encounter many other geocachers as I started with the furthest removed caches and worked back and was more interested in taking pictures anyway.


I found the camp dynamite hut. It looks solid enough still, except for the roof.


I loved Lookout Lake. No geocachers here, just fishermen.


Found me a little critter. He told me he wasn’t a geocache.


The next day I got up early and went out to Sand Creek to take some photos. One of the prettist places in the state as far as I am concerned.


And then I drove out to the nearby Nature Conservancy’s Tallgrass Prairie Preserve. I always love the wide open spaces with rolling hills and the bison.


I’ve never been able to photograph the feeling of exapanse of this place. It is almost 40,000 acres.


It is huge and goes on forever.


And then I drove down to Woolaroc, Frank Phillips’ (of Phillips Petroleum) country place. Woolaroc is an acronym for “Woods, Lakes,and Rocks”. He has a first class western art museum, a buffalo herd, and all sorts of other stuff that an oil gazillionaire needs.


And a barn for the the critters.  I love the barn.


And the landscaping (rockscaping).


And the Native American design motif. I know its cultural misappropriation but I still like it.

And then I went home.  But I had a great time.

The Slowest Runner in the World


I went running Wednesday night, I was planning on doing eight miles but it was just so cold and windy that I couldn’t stay focused. I had my camera (of course I had my camera, you know that) and started playing with the timer.


So this was my first take. Hit the button and count to five and turn around and come back except I must have a slow count. As you can see I’m still moving away. Not very far for ten seconds I say. You know, we have a whole industry devoted to fast runners. Every four years we have the Olympics and get really get excited about the fast runners. Well, what about us slow runners, nobody cares. That is not very inclusive is it? There is a whole bunch of us slow runners who are marginalized by society. Sniff.


How about a hash tag like #SlowRunnersMatter. And you folks who say, “Well what you are doing is not technically running Alan” Well, phooey on you. Us slow runners need safe spaces where we don’t have to hear trash like that. Safe spaces where we can feel good about ourselves. And participant ribbons, we need more participant ribbons. (Actually I have lots of those.)


Have I ever told you about my track career? In seventh grade in Eagar, Arizona we had a track team and we were going to a big meet in Holbrook, Arizona and I ran the quarter mile. We lined up and the gun went off and and the race started. I was so slow that I didn’t finish the race. I couldn’t finish the race because you see by the time I got around the track and was headed to the finish line, the officials had lined the kids up for the next heat so they waved me off the track. Yep, that is pretty slow.  Can you beat that?

Well I amused myself, an onlookers I’m sure, several more times and called it quits after five miles and change. I hate running in the cold wind.

Take care!

Not Quite Wordless Wednesday


This is the Federal Bankruptcy Court in Tulsa. The mottled shadows are because of a building across the street reflecting light on it. I have taken a bunch of pictures of this building but I’m being told by some of my Instagram buds that they have been hassled by security guards coming out and telling them that they can’t take pictures of it. I’ve been doing it for years. So if I disappear one day maybe I’ve been subject to extraordinary rendition to some foreign country by the Feds. I don’t know if I’ll have wifi there or not.


Come on kids, get in the bus, find a seat and sit down! Lets get this show on the road.


I have a thing for arches. Don’t ask why. I just like passageways of all kinds.


I also have a thing for Mid-Century Modern design. This is at Tulsa’s Woodward Park and is almost completely forgotten, ignored, and not maintained. I think it is a graceful structure. I especially like the large concrete canopy over the courtyard. Lots of shade and you should be safe there in even the worst of hail storms. I’m sure that one day I’ll show up and it’ll be gone.

How about you, what have you been up to?

Shadow Shot Sunday – Linnaeus Gardens Shadows


I dropped the kid off at his Improv Comedy group today at drove up to Woodward Park and it’s fabulous Linnaeus Teaching Gardens. A small demonstration garden just packed with stuff but it is all so well designed that the density works. This time of year they generally have lots of shadows.


This shot had shadows of shadows.


I love the walkway to the Gardens. Lots of different light and textures.


Outside the gardens and inside Woodward Park I found this group of women getting ready for a shoot.  I thought they were an elegant group. I hope they don’t mind me stealing a shot.


I saw a cat and called, here Kitty Kitty, and here it came so that is probably his name, right? He was a curious cat. He may even be a watch cat. He inspected everybody who came by.  Kitty Kitty quickly became bored with me and walked off with a dismissive flick of his tail.

Have you ever been dismissed by a cat?

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Skywatch Friday – A Sunset From the Old Office

ONEOK Paza Sunset Topaz Adjust

It’s October and the sun is getting lower so when I left my office I took the elevator up to the 17th floor to my old office. (Which is still empty by the way!!! After almost two years!!!) And I took this photo. If you look not too hard you will see a reflection of my bright red camera. I thought about knocking the window out so I could take the pic without the reflection but I decided not to do so. Maybe next time, but probably not.

The weather is getting milder, the temperatures cooler, and the humidity lower. Pretty soon the leaves will start changing and the various Fall races that I love will happen. Yep, things are looking up.

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