Monday, December 19, 2016

Nature beyond the neon: Reno, Nev.

The weather is brisk and beautiful during our annual visit to visit family and friends in Reno, Nevada. The sunshine entices us to spend time outdoors where we find several oases of autumn color in this otherwise casino-lit city.

Galena Creek Park

Just up Mount Rose Highway from our former home in south suburban Reno, this park is one of our favorites. We stop by to see how the trees planted eight years ago for our younger son's Boy Scout Eagle project are doing. He's relieved to see that most are still alive. The ranger tells us that he's removed the temporary irrigation that the scouts installed and he's quite pleased with the trees.

We check out the hill where our son led a tree-planting project
at Galena Creek Park, Reno, Nev.

Flags fly at Galena Creek Park in Reno, Nev.

Lazy 5 Regional Park

On the other end of town, north of Sparks, we visit Lazy 5, the scene of our older's son Eagle Scout project about a dozen years ago. He organized about a hundred volunteers to plant trees here when this park was brand new. It looks like the trees are thriving. Despite the sunny day, there aren't many visitors on this weekday afternoon, although we provide a band aid to a little girl who got a boo boo on the playground. That scout motto — Be Prepared — comes in handy.

We're pretty sure this is one of the trees planted as part of
our older son's Eagle Scout project at Lazy 5 Regional Park
in Sparks, Nev.

Lazy 5 Regional Park in Sparks, Nev.

Teglia's Paradise Park

Just down the road from our Sparks condo, Teglia is home to several species of geese and ducks. We enjoy a walk around the lake and a view of of the local drive-in theater.

El Rancho Drive-In Theater can be seen across the pond in Taglia's Paradise
Park in Reno, Nev.

One of many geese gaggles in Taglia's Paradise Park in Sparks, Nev.

Sparks Marina

One of my first assignments for the Reno Gazette-Journal was to write about this venue, so it holds a special place in my heart. We take a couple of two-mile laps around the lake, during which we spy a bald eagle.

In order to maintain a desirable water level at Sparks Marina, 2.3 million gallons
of water are pumped out of the lake and into the Truckee River each day.

A bald eagle (one of a pair) is a resident at Sparks Marina in Sparks, Nev.

A cute duck dips its toes in the water at Sparks Marina in Sparks, Nev.

Rancho San Rafael Regional Park

I love visiting the arboretum here. Although no flowers are in bloom this time of year, the park is still pretty. Each September, the park hosts the Great Reno Balloon Race.

Wilbur D. May Arboretum in Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno, Nev.,
is a pleasant place for a walk, even in the late autumn.

Wilbur D. May Arboretum at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno, Nev.

A picnic pavilion at Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno, Nev.

Reno Riverwalk

A walk along the Truckee River is just the antidote for our post-election blues. The city of Reno has put in a lot of effort to create a beautiful area here, in the heart of downtown.

The Truckee River flows through downtown Reno, Nev.

These ducks seem to be enjoying the kayak park on the Truckee River
in downtown Reno, Nev.

Detail shot of a fountain along the Riverwalk in Reno, Nev.

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