The Tampa Bay Water Ski team has their annual Christmas show on the Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend. My sisters were in town for Thanksgiving week so we headed to the first show. Our cousin was Santa.
They had the largest crowd that weekend that they have ever had. Even the great blue heron couldn’t find a place to land. It’s a great way to kick off the holidays, even if we were in shorts and tshirts.
The main attraction in downtown Salt Lake City is the Temple Square, Three city blocks make up this group of buildings owned by the Mormons and is the most popular tourist destination in the area. Brett and I spent some time there before heading to the airport to fly home. The morning we were there, 3 weddings were taking place so there was a lot of foot traffic around the main temple. Visitors cannot go inside but can see a model of it at the visitor’s center.
Reflections on the pool in front of the temple.
There are a few building you can enter including the Tabernacle. While we were not able to catch the choir practicing, we did hear the organ playing.
Early one morning in November I was out at Fort Desoto and noticed a lot of big boats in the area. Fort Desoto sits at the end of Tampa Bay and the boats pass by the park on the way into Port Tampa from the gulf.
The guys on these boats must have a very strange life. Being gone long periods of time out at sea. I always think of the movie Captain Phillips and wave as they go by the fishing pier. I’m sure no one is paying attention. They are probably working in the cabins getting ready to head out or come in to port depending on which direction they are going.
Someone had staked out their spot on the spit island just off the north tip of the beach. By early November, the red tide algae bloom was mostly gone from the beach but there were still some spots that smelled of dead fish. The water looked clear but the bloom came back later for a short time after a big storm. The morning I was there was clear.
The birds on the trails were scarce with the exception of a few common ones including a northern parula and many of the state bird, the mockingbird.
The usual waterbirds were also around.
Frigatebirds were flying high overhead.
On my way out of the park I saw a bald eagle sitting on a utility tower. All of the eagles are back for the winter.
During our vacation in Utah, we hiked up Lisa Falls in Cottonwood Canyon knowing that there would be very little water coming down due to the drought. It was a quick hike up and the view was amazing so even though we only saw a trickle of water, it was worth the walk.
Beautiful views along the hike. After the falls, we crossed the street and hiked the Little Cottonwood Canyon trail along the river. More on that later.