Heron Lake State Park, New Mexico – Day 22

As a holder of the New Mexico Annual Camping Permit (non-resident $225), I can stay up to three weeks in a park, which I have been doing here at Heron Lake. My three weeks were up yesterday and I had planned to move on to El Vado Lake State Park about 30 miles away. After six days I could then return here to Heron Lake State Park.

Because the campground was not full last weekend, at the last moment, I decided to ask the head park ranger if he would give me a one-time exemption to the six-day-out rule. I gave him the Blog entry link about my May 27th accident to help him understand the reason for my request. He got together with the campground host and they decided to let me stay here until next Monday, at which time they will look at the possibility of another additional week. So, for the moment, I’m good to stay here for at least another six days.

There are two major factors which I need to consider regarding the move. I need to stay at higher elevations in order to stay in decent weather temperatures. El Vado Lake State Park is 300 feet lower in elevation and hence a little warmer. In addition, I need to minimize my physical movements to aid in my accident recovery. So, if I can avoid the physical effort involved in hooking up the Bronco to the motorhome and then driving the 60 miles (there and back), so much the better.

I still need more rest and recuperation from my May 27th accident. My right ribcage area remains slightly swollen and tender to the touch. I’m still experiencing the occasional popping in my chest with the associated mild burning pain. I remain taking Ibuprofen, icing my ribcage area 2-3 times a day and wearing an elastic bandage abound my chest. The doctors told me to expect 6-12 weeks for recovery. The accident occurred six weeks and three days ago. Can you tell I’m ready for the recovery to be finalized?

I had been told there are a number of Osprey nests in the area. I found the first one about 1,000 feet away from the back of the visitors center. Here are some photos that I took.

As always you may left click upon an image to see an enlarged view and then click once again to see an even larger view…

To reach that far out at such a small subject required using the full 30x power of the optical zoom lens on my camera. That’s the equivalent of a 750 mm lens which is impossible to hand-hold steady enough to get a picture. So I used my small, somewhat shaky tripod and managed to get this one good photo…

I then went in search of another nest about one mile away. As I drove up I could see the chick’s heads sticking out of the nest, but the noise of the Bronco approaching made them camera-shy…

Mama Osprey was watching over the nest on another pole about 10 feet away. It was a difficult photo to get because I was shooing almost directly into the sun. Also, this is a hand-held photo…

It was fun to capture these photos, but bird/animal photography takes both patience and a bit of luck.

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2012
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