Friday, July 27, 2012

A Sunset Sky

Because of the many trees, coves, hills, valleys and "hollers" that there were in middle Tennessee it was often difficult to capture good pictures of the setting sun without traveling some distance.
Capturing beautiful pictures of beautiful sunsets is no challenge at all in Wyoming.
We rent a very small house a few miles outside of Cody that is surrounded by mountains and backs up to Bureau of Land Management public lands.
It is a quiet place.
A place where you do not hear sirens or constant traffic or trains blowing whistles as they barrell through town or neighborhood teenagers with their loud car radios thumping out obnoxious rap music.  It is a quiet place.
When I walk outside the house and step onto the front porch I can see Carter Mountain, Cedar Mountain, Rattlesnake Mountain and Heart Mountain.
Endless BLM land, many irrigated ranches, horses - many horses.
Often deer and antelope.
Often rabbits that Jamie loves to terrorize as much as she loved to terrorize squirrels in Tennessee.
And every night through the summer there are beautiful sunsets.
Sometimes they are ridiculously red.  Sometimes different shades of pink or orange or yellow or purple.  They all change color minute by minute until eventually the sun drops below Cedar and Rattlesnake Mountains completely, and is gone for one more day.
The picture above was taken one day last week, on a day (like so many that we have seen since we arrived back in Wyoming) that had been very hot and dry, except for a very brief shower that lasted no more than two or three minutes and that blew violently over our path before disappearing across the BLM land behind us.
This picture was taken immediately after a short rain shower and contains a section of rainbow.
Black and grey clouds were following the path of the rain (which we had watched for 20 minutes as the narrow band of showers passed over the mountains, moved towards us, fell upon us, and then passed over us), and the sky was a combination of disappearing rain clouds, blue sky, puffy white clouds and the rainbow.
I took all of these pictures within the span of an hour.............
The old wagon that was on the property last year is still standing in the same spot, still beautiful and rustic and old, and still half full of old sun-bleached antlers and animal skulls................
We collected logs a few weeks ago from various ranch owners in the immediate area who were trying to clear out their pastures and around their house.
I have never really stacked wood before but have certainly had plenty of experience with it recently, all in preparation for a long winter ahead of us.
LC has used a chain saw and wood splitter to cut the wood into wood-stove sized logs, and I have scooped up kindling and stacked the wood.
We have cut and stacked quite a bit more since this picture was taken but we are almost done.
Which is a good thing because when I saw all the logs we had strewn all over the yard after dumping them out of our truck my heart just sank.
It looked like a whole lot of wood at the time, and it indeed was.................
The wagon and rainbow were facing towards the front of the house.
As I walked around the house with Jamie I looked up at the sky as I always do when we reached the back of he house and it was red.
There were portions of the rainbow still holding onto the red sky and as Jamie sniffed at the bushes and territorily continued to mark her stomping grounds I stood for a few moments, realizing that the sky all around me, in this late evening was very very beautiful...................
The house is placed at the very top of the road, and overlooks the valley below.
West towards Yellowstone Park is where the sun always sets each evening, and from our vantage point on the hill I watch every night as it eventually settles over Cedar and Rattlesnake and Heart.
The sky was still valiantly trying to clear, but through the dark clouds the sun shone brilliantly.
I snapped many pictures as the sky changed colors by the minute..............
I walked alone close to town one afternoon a few weeks ago.
Parking "up the hill" near a complex that contains the recreation center, the arena and the library, I walked down a set of steps, through a couple of quiet residential streets, and then eventually through town.
I took these pictures on the way back up to my truck as I climbed the long set of gravel and wooden steps.
Heart Mountain, as it does everywhere in Cody, dominated the landscape.................
At the top of the hill adjacent to the very large parking lot, there is a long portrait of the Cody landscape.
It describes some of the terrain in the area, and names the mountains that are visible from this vantage point.
There are benches to rest after the climb up the steps, and they are a nice place to just sit and look out over the entire city.
I sat there for a long time on this particular day.  Enjoying the quiet.  Enjoying the beautiful and serene landscape.  Enjoying the time I had alone.  In no hurry to climb back into my truck and head towards home...................
While LC ran errands one day last week Jamie and I wandered alone through the downtown city park.
Located across from city hall, this park is bordered in back and front by the high school and the now busy Sheridan Avenue.
The park contains a large green space, a children's park, a covered concert platform, and a mini golf area.
Next to the park is the Cody Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center, and a very well used set of tennis courts.
The entire complex is beautiful, well landscaped, very user friendly and very welcoming.
It is a quiet oasis right now during the very busy tourist season of summer, and I enjoy walking and wandering with my sweet dog each and every time I come here.
Below is the Chamber and Visitor Center................
At the opposite end of the park is a large war memorial and a whimsical statue of Buffalo Bill Cody carrying a small child on his shoulders.................
Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky...........Rabindranath Tagore

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