Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Steps or stairs

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This week’s Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge theme is steps or stairs. I only have one photo to share for this theme, but when I saw these beautiful steps a couple of weeks ago, I knew they deserved their own photo post.

I found these amazing stone steps at Dos Picos County Park in Ramona, California, while hiking on a trail at the back of the park. In the spring, Dos Picos Park is simply beautiful. The grass that grows there is quite particular. It’s very fine, very tall, very soft, and very… green! Believe me, living in San Diego, you don’t get to see grass this green very often.

Between the many coast live oaks, the blooming lilacs (you can see photos of those lilacs here and here), and greener than green grass, sometimes I feel like I’ve stepped into some type of fairyland. And that’s why I think these stone steps fit perfectly with the fairyland theme. What do you think?

Cee's Fun Foto Challenge: Stone steps or stairs
Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Stone steps or stairs

Let’s Be Wild Weekly Photo Challenge – Distant

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I’m participating in the online adventure travel and outdoor photography magazine LetsBeWild.com’s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggers. This week’s Challenge is distant.

I have a 12x optical zoom on the camera I take with me most often. It doesn’t allow me to zoom very far but it’s usually good enough to capture what I can see with the naked eye. For this “distant” theme, I decided to focus on animals that fly (but are sitting still at the time), since they are the ones I mostly have to zoom on to capture on camera. Here are a few recent shots, and a couple of older ones. Remember you can click on each photo for a larger view.

I took the first photo this past weekend at Dos Picos County Park, not far from San Diego, California. This red-tailed hawk was sitting at the top of a tall sycamore tree and being very noisy, so I thought he deserved to have his picture taken. We have a lot of red-tailed hawks around and it’s always a treat to watch the male and female hunt for food for their young together.

Let's be wild weekly photo challenge - distant red tailed hawk
Let’s be wild weekly photo challenge – distant red tailed hawk

I took the next photo last week at the San Diego Zoo. I believe this blue heron is a local freeloader since they water basin was mostly occupied by reptiles – turtles and crocodiles. This big guy was eyeing the little fish swimming in the water and slowly walking towards them for a taste.

Let's be wild weekly photo challenge - distant blue heron
Let’s be wild weekly photo challenge – distant blue heron

This little guy below is a Stellar jay bird. Isn’t he beautiful? I took his photo in Idyllwild, California, where there are a lot of these birds. What’s interesting is, we only live two hours away from Idyllwild and we have regular blue jays here, but no Stellar jay birds.

Let's be wild weekly photo challenge - distant Stellar jay bird
Let’s be wild weekly photo challenge – distant Stellar jay bird

I love this last photo of a blue dragonfly. We have a lot of orange/red dragonflies here and I still have to take a few photos of them, but this is the only blue dragonfly I’ve seen. I feel lucky to have been able to capture it with my camera, since dragonflies can fly for hours without taking a break.

Let's be wild weekly photo challenge - distant blue dragonfly
Let’s be wild weekly photo challenge – distant blue dragonfly

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Let’s Be Wild Weekly Photo Challenge – Reflections

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I’m participating in the online adventure travel and photography magazine LetsBeWild.com’s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggers. This week’s Challenge is: Reflections.

Water is a great medium for reflections so it will be featured in every photo below, but maybe not always in the way you expect it to be. Remember you can click on each photo to see it in a larger format.

My favorite photo when it comes to reflection is the first one below. I took it at the San Diego Botanic garden and it features a green heron standing above some very still water, so the reflection is almost identical to the original subject.

Let's be wild photo challenge - reflections of a green heron
Let’s be wild photo challenge – reflections of a green heron

The next photo shows the reflection of the sun rays on the wet sand at Coronado Beach, in San Diego. Can you guess it’s my favorite beach here?

Let's be wild photo challenge - reflections at Coronado Beach, San Diego, California
Let’s be wild photo challenge – reflections at Coronado Beach, San Diego, California

I displayed the next photo in yesterday’s post but I want to share it here too, as I love the reflection of the blades of grass in the large water drop. I can’t help admiring the beautiful little treasures that nature leaves everywhere for us to discover.

Let's be wild photo challenge - reflections in a water drop
Let’s be wild photo challenge – reflections in a water drop

As for the last photo I’ll display for this theme, I took it last weekend at Dos Picos County Park, in Ramona, California. I love the peace and quiet effect of this pond. As you can see, it was a beautiful day.

Let's be wild photo challenge - reflections at the pond
Let’s be wild photo challenge – reflections at the pond

Wildflower blooms in Southern California

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I spotted these beautiful spring wildflower blooms in Dos Picos Park, Ramona, California, Spring 2012. The weather wasn’t perfect (it was cloudy most of the day) but it gave the park an eerie light, which made for some very nice photos of wildflower blooms. Almost out of this world.

Click on the photos of wildflower blooms for larger size.

Wildflower blooms in the spring in Southern California
Wildflower blooms in the spring in Southern California
Spring blooms in San Diego, California
Spring blooms in San Diego, California

Lilac trees in bloom in Southern California

Zazzle online shop If you enjoy my photos and would like to purchase some, I want to thank you! Simply visit my Zazzle online shop and browse the product offerings. If there’s a photo you would like to purchase but don’t see it in my shop, please contact me by using the Contact form at the bottom of my home page and let me know which photos you are interested in purchasing, and in what format / medium.

Here are some photos of lilac trees in bloom at Dos Picos County Park, Ramona, California. I took these photos in the spring, on a cloudy day, which made for great lighting effects.

Click on each photos of the lilac trees for a larger view.

This photo below is my favorite. I have never seen grass with such a bright, light shade of green. It seemed so surreal, I knew I had to take a picture of it. I bet that grass turned dry and yellow a few weeks later, but natural green grass is such an uncommon sight in San Diego, this was a treat.

Lilac and green, for a beautiful spring picture
Lilac and green, for a beautiful spring picture

Ramona lilacs have smaller flowers than regular lilac trees and they don’t smell anything (the disappointing part) but they’re still very beautiful.

Ramona lilac tree in bloom
Ramona lilac tree in bloom

Here’s the whole picture, with the lush green grass in the front and the many lilac trees in the back.

Ramona lilac trees in bloom in Dos Picos Park, Ramona, California
Ramona lilac trees in bloom in Dos Picos Park, Ramona, California