Trail Camera in the Mountains

Thursdays are usually reserved for hiking with the Portal Rodeo Hiking Club, but this week other duties took precedence, so while the hiking club went up Gray Mountain, Chiricahua Sky Island Rodeo with one of her guests and I drove up into the Chiricahuas.  One set of guests to the Painted Pony Resort, the LSU Arthropod Museum, make yearly excursions to collect in the Chiricahua and Peloncillo Mountains.  The LSAMs use PPR as a base of operations collecting for the museum and ongoing research projects during the monsoon season in late summer.  Last year the group placed a camera off trail high in the Chiricahuas to document wildlife activity.  I was asked to find the location and replace the batteries and SD card in the trail camera and mail the SD card to them.  With a description of the location and photographs in memory 3 of us headed up into the mountains.  Arriving at East Turkey Creek on FS42, just past the turnoff to Paradise, we parked and started upstream.  Initially checking every possible candidate tree for the camera, it became apparent the camera was further upstream.  Continuing up the stream bed the location was eventually discovered and new batteries and SD card were installed.  The camera was replaced in the same location and the 3 hikers headed back down the canyon to the car. 

A review of the 3000 or so recorded images suggests that the upper reaches of Turkey Creek Canyon is more popular than thought with many images of hikers and summer swimmers, but wildlife also uses the canyon and its year round supply of water.  Below is a multi-image composite of one of the smooth water slides found along the bottom of Turkey Creek and one of a bobcat headed upstream.  I will leave the remaining wildlife photographs for the LSAMs to publish so as not to spoil their surprise.

Turkey Creek water slide

Bobcat high in the Chiricahua Mountains


  1. The Bobcat does not surprise me at all! It was great seeing the water running and listening to it. It sure was a beautiful day for checking this out.

  2. All the small waterfalls and plunge pools along the canyon bottom made for a nice walk in the high country. Still 2 more waterfalls I have not photographed up Turkey Creek canyon. Will have to get back up there this year.

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