Saturday, April 19, 2014

Tucson To Phoenix

Saguaro National Park West 4

I'll get back out on the streets of The Lou this weekend but I want to finish up some Arizona stuff. Saguaro National Park, which we saw just over a week ago, has another branch northwest of Tucson. It's a perfect stop on the way back to Phoenix.

This is typical landscape for middle and southern Arizona. My feelings about it seem to change over time. I used to view this as beautiful country, very spare and clear. This trip my reaction was that it is more harsh and unforgiving, unsuitable for cities without great manipulation of the environment. It felt good to come back to the pastel softness of Midwestern spring. I dunno, maybe I'm just getting old and cranky.

The bottom photo has some of that manipulation, a strip of irrigated emerald alfalfa between desert dirt in the foreground and sand-blown mountains in the back. I'm a climate pessimist. Your opinion may be different.

One last Arizona post tomorrow, probably. Simon and Garfunkel wrote a song ages ago about the owner of the place.                        

Saguaro National Park West 2

Desert Irrigation


Luis Gomez said...

These are great Bob.

Norma said...

One word comes to mind: desolate.

William Kendall said...

It is terrain that we see manipulation of the environment to support places that shouldn't be there. Phoenix is an example of a city that has no business being where it is.

The wild landscape itself, however, I find beautiful and stark. You capture it so well. said...

Regarding William's comment above:

duly, Phoenix is where it is because it was founded as an agricultural community to grow crops for the miners near Prescott. Phoenix had a year-round water supply back then from the Salt River.

They used some of the same ancient canals built by Hohokams to irrigate the valley.

The river no longer flows, except during large storms. 100% of the water is stored behind dams and used by the large urban population.

cieldequimper said...

I'll have to get myself down there some day.

What is it with Simon and Garfunkel at the moment? This is the second blog this week that has me humming their tunes! :-)

Jack said...

Arizona is too brown for me. And, when one sees a patch of green, it looks out of place. Living in Florida in the winter, though, I am not one to throw stones about manipulating nature to serve man's ends. The two things that made southern Florida habitable at all were air conditioning and ways to eradicate mosquitos.