Artist Hikes Crevasse Moraine in the Fall

Crisp, sharp frosty mornings roll into sun bathed yellow-gold birch leaves papering the ground at the Crevasse Moraine hiking trails, a perfect time of year to trek. Bob and I walked up and down the undulating trails sometimes blinded by sunlight streaming through dark woods invigorated by clean air and autumn beauty. Over stimulation to […]

Lunch on a Log at Eklutna Lake Trail

My hiking partner, Evelyn Bunch, getting ready to leave our lunch spot along the beach on the Eklutna Lake Trail. We estimated that we hiked about 4 miles out, 8 miles round trip, on a lovely level trail that skirts the lake. I’ve been sidelined for a few weeks with a knee/leg injury so I […]

Reed Lakes Trail Hatcher Pass

Three old broads hiking the Reed Lakes Trail in Hatcher Pass in 81 degree heat!  Left to right me, Evelyn Bunch, and Mary Mystrom.  What a beautiful day to spend hiking in the mountains. We made it to the lower lakes and made the decision to head back home.  We hiked close to 8 miles […]

Mile 5 Gold Mint Trail, Hatcher Pass

Hikers stand next to the 5 mile marker on the Gold Mint Trail at Hatcher Pass, Alaska.  This week I was joined by Evelyn Bunch, Jen Scott and Mary Mystrom.  This group is very fit and I had to work hard to keep up with their pace.  We hiked a total of 10 miles which […]

Palmer/Moose Creek RR Trail Hike

We cancelled our regular Tuesday hike due to heavy rain and re-scheduled Wednesday, weather permitting.   Wednesday morning I could see fresh snow at Hatcher Pass and the sun shining in Palmer so two of us hiking die-hards decided to try the Palmer/Moose Creek Rail Road Trail.  It is a very scenic route that begins at […]

Hiking Hatcher Pass Gold Mint Trail

This week five of us tackled the first three miles of the Gold Mint Trail at Hatcher Pass.  Not pictured (taking our photo) is Mary Kate Mayer, and from left to right; Carol Turner, Sue Mues, me, and Mary Mystrom.  What started out as a cloudy cool day turned into perfect, sunny hiking weather.  We […]

Hikers Summit the Palmer Butte

A few of us girls are planning to hike together one day a week the first hike was yesterday, June 2.  In the middle of a clear, sunny day we drove two cars to the Butte trail in Palmer.  This time I knew better and parked one car at the north trail head and another […]

Niebrugge Finds Subject Matter Near Studio

I’ve spent too many days at the desk attacking the piles of paper that accumulated while I was away.  I don’t mind being indoors during the ash fall from the volcano Mt. Redoubt, but today the sun came out, the mountains were visible and the temperatures climbed to 40 degrees Fahrenheit.  I had to go […]

Cholla Cactus Flowers

These are the first blooms I’ve seen on the Cholla Cactus this year. The Anza Borrego desert is alive in color, it has been a spectacular wildflower season. I’m sad to say that we have to leave soon, but anxious to get back to work in my studio in Alaska. More tomorrow, Gail Niebrugge, wildflower […]

Beavertail Cactus Blooms

The cactus are beginning to bloom in the desert, I especially love the vivid magenta of the Beavertail flowers. It is fun to hike and search for the early bloomers, it reminds me of an Easter egg hunt. More tomorrow, Gail Niebrugge, wildflower artist

Palm Canyon Oasis

I find myself returning to the Anza Borrego Desert Palm Canyon often, it is one of my favorite places in the park. On a hot day the clear, cool springs at the end of the canyon make the hike all the more worthwhile. More tomorrow, Gail Niebrugge, landscape artist

Squeezing through the Slot

Another great hike is a 3 mile treck through a winding slot canyon starting near Buttes Pass Road on Highway 78 east of Borrego Springs Road. Two state park volunteer naturalists guided our group as we squeezed and ducked our way through this Disneyesque landscape. We loved this canyon, but don’t want to be anywhere […]

Hike to Truckhaven Rocks

Returning back to the Anza Borrego Desert we took a group hike with a state park naturalist up one of the unnamed washes of the North Fork Arroyo Salado beginning about mile 35 on Hwy. S-22, to the Truckhaven Rocks. The sandstone lined wash is interesting, we were delighted to find a new plant or […]

Parish’s Poppy

Unlike the California Gold Poppy, the Parish’s Poppy is much smaller and grows in the Anza Borrego desert region of Southern Californina. It is fun to find these tiny golden wildflowers tucked among the boulders, or hidden in sandy washes. The desert is coming alive with yellow colored wildflowers during the peak of the bloom. […]


With the wildflower bloom at its peak, I’m hiking the Anza Borrego desert daily sketching and photographing. Last weekend the San Diego Union featured this spectacular bloom on its front page bringing hundreds of tourists to the park to see the wildflowers. During the week we have the place mostly to ourselves. It’s amazing to […]


The desert jackrabbits are big, their ears are half as tall as their bodies. They will hold very still seeming invisible, then suddenly burst out of the brush and tear across the ground lickety split. This one let me get quite close before he took off. They are gorging themselves on the green grass and […]

The Desert Blooms

We spent most of the day today hiking near Palm Canyon and identifying wildflowers, they are nearing their peak bloom in the California Anza Borrego desert this winter. The ground is covered in millions of tiny colorful blossoms. More tomorrow, Gail Niebrugge, Wildflower artist


The temperature was 80 in Borrego Springs yesterday so we drove to Blair Valley to hike, at this higher elevation the temperature was a comfortable 72. We followed the well marked Blair Valley Road and easily found the trailhead for the Morteros, an ancient American Indian campsite where we saw the bowl shaped holes formed […]

Tumbleweed in the Pumpkin Patch

Yesterday afternoon we explored the Badlands of the Anza Borrego State Park and found the Pumpkin Patch, a place scattered with pumpkin shaped rocks. Unusual and interesting. It was sunset, and the low light gave the rocks a yellow/orange glow. The Badlands are a maze of 4 wheel drive trails that follow sandy washes up […]

Carpets of Sand Verbena

Evening light illuminated the wildflower Sand Verbena changing the color of the landscape to fuchsia as it clings to desert dunes. This spot along the Henderson Canyon Road is a nice place to enjoy sunset. More tomorrow, Gail Niebrugge, wildflower artist

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