August 14th, 2004


Hummingbird and Star

After a kind of lazy morning, I hopped in the car and drove up to Radium, which is north and a bit west of Silverthorne. Larry (my step-dad) is caretaking a piece of land for the Colorado Division of Wildlife up there, and Mom's up there with him for a couple weeks, and since I had nothing scheduled for the weekend (for once), I went to visit.

It was really nice. Much quieter than the last time we went up, when my cousins and grandfather and stepbrother and so on were there, too.

I spent a good chunk of the evening just watching hummingbirds. They have so many of them! There were times when there were literally a dozen of them zipping around the feeders. I didn't manage to get many pictures, but I got one or two to perch briefly on my finger by moving slowly up from underneat while they were feeding. They mostly have broad-tails and rufous. They're such amazing little critters! So fast, so small, so fierce, so pretty. It was really cool.

After I got ready for bed, I went outside to look at the stars for a few minutes. It was just phenomenal. I hadn't realized it before, but from that house, you can't see any artificial lights; no streetlights, no houselights, no city glow, nothing. There was also no moon, and when I went outside it was Really. Frickin'. DARK! So dark you didn't dare even walk around outside.

The sky was completely clear and the house is up at about seven thousand feet, I think, so the stars were just incredible. I could actually see them twinkle and make out different colors. The Milky Way was huge and bright. I even saw a shooting star.

The other thing is that it was absolutely silent. I could hear the train down in the valley for a little while, but after it moved away, there was nothing. Total quiet. Even the little bit of breeze was didn't make any noise.

It was really, really cool.