Feathers, family, food, fires – final day

Yesterday we saw an Osprey nest just off of the road.
So this morning we took a short side trip to get a closer look.
At least one osprey was in the nest, and moved about a bit, but not enough to provide a really good picture. (We did note a more determined photographer setting up a tripod.)

Osprey nest – obviously next to a road

The more interesting feathered friends turned out to be the rather large flock of swallows that inhabited the underside of the bridge adjacent to the osprey nest.

Swallow Nests

The cheaper homesites – no sun.

Full line of nests

The pictures of the flock are anything but in focus. But what do you expect when you pair a smart-phone camera with darting and diving fliers. But here is one anyway. There are birds against the sky, the foliage and the water.

Check out the lower left corner of the picture

This is all adjacent to a wildlife preserve area.

Poudre Trail area preserve

The heat was again warmer than Seattle is likely to see for several years.
When we left at around 8 AM to check out the osprey it was 79 degrees.
When we arrived at the nest a few minutes later it was 84 degrees.
When we got back to the hotel, a total of about 30 minutes later it was 90 degrees.

The next step was to gather with family once more.
Here is a parade of Harms as we left for lunch. (99 degrees)

Doris, Bob & Carl the enforcer

Lunch was at the Island Grill – pretty darn good food. And entertainment – natural style.
There were a few planter boxes on the outside dining area (we ate inside – it was almost 100 degrees after all).

The boxes were full of pretty flowers. And a butterfly. And two bees that kept bugging the butterfly – essentially attacking it from above or the rear. Their goal did not seem to be to hurt the butterfly, but rather to drive it off of the flowers, so they could get the nectar for themselves. This went on for quite a while. And there were other flowers in the box that could have been tasted.

I did not venture out in the “heat of the day” to see if it topped 100 degrees again. But I assume it did.
Carl did venture south – to the Colorado Rockies game.
When he left there was some rain, associated with a thunderstorm.

This was likely the same storm that had just graced Boulder, a little more than 20 miles to the south.
Unfortunately in Boulder it touched off yet another fire – one ridge away from the City.
I will be curious to hear what they may have seen as they drove south, east of Boulder. Or later tonight on the return trip when it is dark out. For those that know Boulder – the fire is close to the NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) facility.

The Fort Collins (High Park fire) has been usurped in the local news by the new Boulder (Flagstaff) fire and the Colorado Springs fire (Waldo Canyon fire). The Colorado Springs fire is perilously close to neighborhoods near the Air Force Academy. As I have been writing this we are jumping back and forth between the ball game and fire coverage. The Colorado Springs area is just amazing, coming right into neighborhoods with likely homes burning as we watch. There is a ridge that is keeping the camera from seeing exactly what is burning, just a wall of black smoke.

And tomorrow AM we will be leaving this triple digit heat. We hear the high in Seattle was about 65 degrees.
For those that wonder about the difference between a humid heat and a dry heat. A dry heat is easier to take. In Tennessee it was in the 90s with high humidity. In Colorado it has been in the 100s with extremely low humidity. I can stand the Colorado heat more easily.

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