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LITTLE BLUFF JOURNAL - OCTOBER 2020 (previous months)

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Little Bluff Cabin cam October 31 - wisps of rising fog deep in the canyon were lit up by the morning sun...

Journal updated on the 22nd

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PRINT OF THE DAY SPECIAL, above (click here)

10/01/20 I’m sitting in the dark this morning (in Colorado) an hour before sunrise and watching the landscape get darker, but it’s supposed to be the other way around! About 90 minutes before sunrise is the end of the darkest part of night and begins a gradual move towards the “day” part, where the landscape gradually gets lighter (known as “astro start”). It took a few sips of java for me to realize what was going on. I was sitting in the shadow of the tall ridge that towers above our campsite just to the west. I was looking out towards the hills, ridges, and mountains that I could clearly see 40 miles to the northeast. But those hills, ridges, and mountains - one layer at a time - were slowly going black. What the heck? It was the MOONLIGHT dummy! The very bright moon was setting in the west behind the ridge, plunging each hill and ridge into shadow and darkness as it moved.

And just as the very farthest mountains went black, the sky behind them started to lighten - the approach of sunrise! In fact it’s an actual rainbow of color that begins below the horizon and reaches into the sky - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet. 45 minutes from sunrise and I can see the entire rainbow already. This happens every day of course, everywhere on the planet - we often can’t see it due to clouds or other things that obscure the view (like our eyes being closed because we are still asleep, haha), or city lights. I like to think of all this as what is going on in our world right now - things appear to be getting darker, but we are really heading not only towards the light, but a RAINBOW of color ahead. Open your eyes, wear a mask, and VOTE. The world will be a better place thanks to you...

10/02/20 870 miles drive across SE Colorado, NE New Mexico, and all of Oklahoma, and I'm back HOME this evening - YIPPIE!

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10/04/20 It was a beautiful sunrise today with godbeams filling the canyons below...

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10/07/20 Halloween SASSAFRAS has arrived! Gonna be a nice fall color season.

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Poisin ive too...

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10/10/20 Cool and foggy early this morning - good thing I had a fuzzy dog on my feet as I sat out on the back deck sipping my Iceland coffee (1/2 cup - they like small portions over there). Very low ceiling this morning - thick fog that’s covered up the sky and the horizon too, but trees at our level are clear. Very still with no wind, and not much sound either.

We have some pretty terrific fall color happening right now. It’s what I call “hiking color” that is best seen when on foot in the woods. Individual trees, smaller trees, underbrush, and ground cover are really blazing away - in fact the color is quite INTENSE, especially some reds, oranges, and yellows. A lot of the leaves are spotted, but still very colorful. Sometimes it’s just a single tree that is in full bloom standing out against a sea of other green trees. Often there is a stand of the same species all in bloom next to each other. But there are more and more groups of unrelated trees/bushes/etc. in bloom together, and when the light and moisture content of the air is just right these are pretty WOW!!! (photo below shows harsh direct sunlight) Plus a wildfloer or two hanging on...

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The “drive by color” is not nearly as nice yet - these are the entire hillsides in bloom that make for great driving around or “leaf peeping” outings. So you may drive around and not see much color, but you can go on a hike and see a lot of color - it just all depends.

One thing is for sure - the color seems to be changing rapidly, and doesn’t seem to be at higher or lower elevations - when it happens, it can be anywhere. And like always, backlit color is a LOT more intense (light coming from behind the tree), and also wet air makes color more saturated. Many streams are almost dry - we’ve not had much rain in the Ozarks for a long time, which will be fine for spectacular color as it happens, but we sure could use a tropical storm to come sit on our heads for a few days...

GREEN TOMATOES - it’s a banner year for them! We probably have more than 50 on the plants right now, and we’ve only got three tomato plants. I know, I know - fried green tomatoes. We prefer the red ones, and have especially been enjoying them on PIZZA - yea! Fresh green peppers have been delicious too!

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We have a few birds at the feeders - mostly small ones these days - plus lots of hawks soaring around - some of them can stop on a dime and hover in place forever - the wind currents seem to be just right for them. The pups got to play with an armadillo as we were leaving the gallery late last night and headed home - the armed critter was like trying to chew a bowling ball and had no trouble escaping without a scratch.

Our BIRD dogs have turned into BUR dogs, but they seem to be fine with getting shaved every week...(below - one dog, one quick trip outside, one pile of burs, and Wilson enjoying the attention that follows)

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10/11/20 A SPECTACULAR sunrise!

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10/16/20 A chilly morning with temps in the mid-30's. There was a heavy frost warning overnight but we decided to let our tomato crop fend for themselves - I counted almost 100 tomatoes of all sizes from green to almost ripe yesterday - we only have four plants, and it's the middle of OCTOBER and they are still thriving!

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10/17/20 A golden sunrise on our neighbor's pasture - looks like a great spot for a swing!

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10/18/20 Sumac and goldenrod in the yard - looking towards Keys Gap and the greater Parthenon/Murray Metroplex beyond.

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10/22/20 Saturn, Jupiter, and the moon have made a triangle in the sky out of each other tonight. And Mars really has been the RED planet this week - the most color I’ve ever seen in it. The pups and I just made a trip up to the gallery and back before bedtime, and it is so warm tonight - 70 degrees. We’ve been having some terrific weather most of this month - as we would expect in Arkansas in October. Last week the forest was quiet most of the day and night except for crickets - slow chirping crickets. All the other day and night bugs had gone away. Then just yesterday I started to hear cicadas again, and today, SPRING peepers! There’s one bunch near our cabin and another bunch between the gallery and the mailbox. Spring temps and a little rain bring spring peepers.

While we did not get a lot of rainfall this week, it was enough to wet down the landscape and saturate some fall colors. That color has been creeping in here and there and we’ve have some really nice color that is spreading around more and more. Although now that the moisture has stopped and the temps have gone up, a lot of the chroma has faded a bit - but I have a feeling that color will be back, more widespread, and with more intensity in the next week. Maybe. There are also large areas where the oaks that had turned really nice reds and oranges have now turned brown and are falling off the trees, covering the ground in some places. In a normal year those leaves would turn color later in the month and would fall while still colorful. This is what happens when the color arrives early.

If you find yourself in or near a wooded area when those leaves begin to fall (I call this “leaf-fall”), I recommend that you get out into the forest, find a comfortable spot to sit down, maybe lean up against a tree or rock, and focus your attention high in one of the trees and wait for movement. When your eye picks up a leaf that has started to fall FOLLOW the leaf with your eyes, all the way to the ground. Then repeat. I bet your day will be better than before!

We continue to harvest both large and small TOMATOES here every day - more than we both can eat! And green peppers too, although those are smaller and only two or three a week, but when Friday arrives, there will be mighty tasty green slivers of fresh peppers right off the vine on the pizza! I’m beginning to like Friday more and more all the time. (it’s homemade pizza night here)

A note about our canvas print gallery - we plan to be OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK from now until Christmas! But for appointments only. That means no matter what day you choose, you can come view 50-60 gallery-wrapped canvas prints (all on sale for half price), plus all of our guidebooks, picture books (on sale for $20 each), 2021 Arkansas calendars ($10 each), and Pam’s original pastels. But you gotta contact us and make an appointment for a specific time. (You don’t have to buy anything, and I don’t talk as much when I’m wearing a mask so you don’t even have to listen to my stories!) I take everyone’s temp at the front door before entry (mine too), and it’s funny how almost everyone is cooler than normal - does that mean that mostly cool people come to the gallery? I think so!

Sunrise clouds this morning looked a little like maple leaves right now...

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10/24/20 Our gallery is now available for appointments SEVEN DAYS A WEEK UNTIL CHRISTMAS! But you must make an appointment first - contact us with your date and time and we'll confirm. 50-60 gallery-wrapped canvas prints (50% discount), $50 Black Mat Prints, all guidebooks $20, all picture books $20, 2021 Arkansas scenic calendars $10, and a selection of Pam's original PASTELS! I must say that it is a delightful experience to have the gallery all to yourself...(no grannie's homemade cookies though, bummer)

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10/29/20 Almost NINE INCHES of rain this eeek!

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10/30/20 A very nice sunrise today, as always!

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Journal Archives - previous months

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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