Javelina on Parade

Javelina Cave Creek Canyon Portal, AZ

Javelina Cave Creek Canyon Portal, AZ

The wildlife here in the Portal AZ / Rodeo, NM area continues to amaze me. I am back at Rusty’s RV Ranch in Rodeo, NM after spending a month in Ashland, MA celebrating the holidays with my family. Dexter and I left the Wild Thing camper here at Rusty’s RV Ranch and flew home to celebrate Christmas and New Year. Dexter is now a seasoned air traveler and was perfectly content to be on the airplane snuggled in his carrier at my feet. While we were away, this area received several days of heavy snowfall…4-6”! This happens only every 5 or so years here and it was quite an event! My friends here sent me photos as I sat in Ashland, MA with no snow and mild mid-40F tems! Crazy weather patterns right?

I’m so very glad I winterized the camper before I left by draining all the water lines and tanks and filled them with RV antifreeze just in case. I thought I was being overcautious but with temps that dropped to 11 while I was gone it was a good call!

I’m spending the wintering here in Southern New Mexico having arrived in September and I will remain here until at least April of this year. After a full year of exploring the USA from coast to coast in Wild Thing, I was ready to settle in for a few months and this area really captured my imagination last year. I spent one night here last January and was so intrigued that I returned for a month stay last February. As I continued my travels, I saw many interesting and beautiful places, but this area remained top on my list. I didn’t expect to find myself so drawn to one area quite this quickly but I’m learning to listen to the whispers of Spirit and follow her lead, so when it was time to rest a bit off the road, I returned. The landscape here is amazing. High desert with mountain views in every direction and Cave Creek Canyon at my doorstep. The people have a strong sense of community, are interesting and are so welcoming to newcomers like myself. The wildlife here is incredibly diverse and so easily accessible. I't’s also a certified dark sky community so viewing (and photographing) the night sky here is breathtaking.

I have been feeding the birds with feeders set up around my camper and had quite a following before I left for the holidays. The birds have been slowly returning since I’ve come back and started putting the food out again. Among them yesterday were the elusive and lovely Scaled Quail. They were regular visitors this fall but this was the first re-appearance this year of these unique beauties. Later in the day I took a drive up to Cave Creek Canyon and on the way spotted a roadrunner, two deer, a red-tailed hawk, a coyote, and these interesting and quirky Javelina aka Peccary. These guys look like a hairy pig, but they are not a pig at all and are actually more closely related to the Hippopotamus family! You can read all about them here on Wikipedia and here on Ungulates of the World.

I hope you enjoy this bit of video I was able to capture of these unique animals along Portal Road.