Summer rain = running creek

5 08 2019

Piedra above Spring Creek

Piedra grazes above FLOWING Spring Creek.

Yes, we got rain, and yes, we are very happy. 🙂 This isn’t the only creek flowing in Disappointment Valley after rain yesterday!


23 03 2019

S'aka and Skywalker

Self-explanatory. 🙂

We got more rain. Spring Creek still is streaming through Spring Creek Basin. 🙂

Run, Spring Creek, run!

19 03 2019

Skywalker and S'aka in Spring Creek, in Spring Creek Basin.

You’re about to read something you might not ever read on this blog again:

These mustangs are in Spring Creek.


Spring Creek actually is flowing in Spring Creek Basin these days, and it’s flowing from snow melt – and rain – and it is providing the horses with more than a flash of drinking water. This is the first time I’ve really known the arroyo that is Spring Creek to run with snow melt. Usually, it flows for a limited time after a significant rain event, and then it’s a dry arroyo again.

This has been an unusual winter in many ways.

Now, our Spring Creek Basin mustangs are enjoying water in Spring Creek, and it’s a beautiful world after all. 🙂

(Spring Creek and its tributary arroyos – many of which also are running or at least trickling with water right now – drain Spring Creek Basin, which really is a large geographic “bowl.” Water drains out of the basin and flows in the Spring Creek arroyo across lower Disappointment Valley to Disappointment Creek, and from there to the Dolores River. Usually, all those arroyos are dry, and Spring *Creek* is a misnomer. The mustangs always are in Spring Creek *Basin* Herd Management Area. They’re rarely in Spring *Creek* because it – and the other arroyos – usually are simply dry washes or ditches or drainages.)

Cliff walker

16 07 2017


Seven walks a trail down to Spring Creek, which wasn’t flowing … but would run – just a little bit – a couple of days after this photo was taken.

Why did Seven walk the cliff to cross the creek?

To visit the bands on the other side, of course! 🙂

Rain = gooooooooood!

30 07 2014

And we finally got rain …

County line drainage during the big flow.

This drainage coming out of Spring Creek Basin usually is wide and dry.  The water gap is in case of episodes such as this! The PVC pipe creates a visible barrier for the horses in the fence line, but it swings with the force of water when it flows. This pic was taken from the Disappointment Road looking northeast into the basin. The unnamed promontory is barely visible through rain at far back right. The horses already were taking advantage of the rain and running arroyos; three bands were to the east and north of this point.

County line drainage after the big flow.

A couple of hours later, the big flow was a memory. But I bet the memory lives on in the form of some ultra-full ponds!

Spring Creek during the surge from a massive rain event.

Here’s a shot of the usually-dry Spring Creek arroyo that runs under the Disappointment Road in the northern part of the valley – west of Spring Creek Basin. In the background, you can see the rimrocks that form the basin’s western boundary and beyond, the unnamed promontory. (Yes, that’s dreaded tamarisk along the left bank of the creek.)

Spring Creek after the surge.

And this is Spring Creek a coupla-few hours later after the above peak. Still high but receding.

The above two pix of Spring Creek are together for comparison purposes. The below two photos were taken inside Spring Creek Basin after the first of those two photos were taken.

Spring Creek flowing high and wide through Spring Creek Basin.

This is the entrance to Spring Creek canyon – site of previous roundups. Spring Creek flows west out of Spring Creek Basin after collecting water from multiple arroyos and drainages in the basin and eventually joins Disappointment Creek, which joins the Dolores River, which joins the Colorado River. Cool, huh? Spring Creek flows only during major rain events like the one today. Spring Creek and Spring Creek Basin are not interchangeable terms.

Spring Creek flowing high and wide through Spring Creek Basin.

Looking upstream, sort of east-southeast. It was raining when I took these photos, so I didn’t stay long.

Rain. Lifeblood of the desert and its inhabitants. I cry at its lack, and I cry for joy when it falls. My heart is happy for Spring Creek Basin’s mustangs and other residents.

Ladies’ man

29 07 2013


The bands were drinking in the bottom of an arroyo the other night, and Mona and Shane wandered off. They might have thought the others would follow, but they didn’t. Pretty soon, there came whinnying, and Comanche responded to the damsels in distress (they’re not even his mares). All was well when he shepherded them back to the flock, err, band(s).


Bonus pic because he’s so darn handsome. 🙂


P.S. Dear god(ess)s of rain and all dancers who kept the faith for the wet stuff: THANK YOU! We got a massive downpour yesterday afternoon. If that doesn’t fill ponds, I don’t know what will.

Evening sip

28 07 2013

Hollywood, Shane, Mona and Aurora drinking in the Spring Creek arroyo.

It doesn’t look like much, but they’re drinking in the bottom of the Spring Creek arroyo in Spring Creek Basin. With more moisture comes more irritation in the form of biting flies.

Shesa stunner

27 07 2013

Kestrel in sunset light in the Spring Creek arroyo.

Kestrel in lovely, almost-sunset light in the Spring Creek arroyo in Spring Creek Basin.

I love the way her golden coat mirrors the golden arroyo wall glowing in the background.

Spring Creek, Spring Creek Basin

6 07 2012

More rain in the basin this afternoon. In the northeastern part of the basin, against the northeastern ridges that form the boundary.

I drove in this evening with a friend, and we crossed Spring Creek – a little muddier/puddlier (yes, that’s a word; I just invented it!) than the pic I posted on the blog previously – a little after 7:30 p.m.

Before 9 p.m., we were heading back out of the basin … and saw this:

Looking upstream.

Looking downstream. At lower right are my tracks from earlier (driving left to right).

Looking all kind of silly dancing around praising the rain that fell earlier. 🙂

Spring Creek flows only during rain events – and it might take awhile for that rain water to get from there to here. In fact, we drove down to the canyon after this – and the water hadn’t made it that far yet!

Stoked, my friends. Simply stoked. 🙂