Photo of the Month of May, 2012

Apparently this type of behavior from Sandhill cranes makes them irresistible to the ladies. Accompany all your jumps with loud ear splitting cries and everyone will fall in love with you.

Actually, these guys are some really neat cranes and they were a great surprise to me when I first came to the mountains in the spring. I am used to seeing them nesting in the winters in Florida where they raise their chicks.

I never knew where they went during the rest of the year, so the first time I heard their call, I knew exactly what I was hearing.

While they are residents of the Platte River, they enjoy a migration to Albuquerque where they have an annual festival. In Florida, we don’t hold a festival for them, but we really should. They are quite remarkable and quirky birds.

Photo of the Month of April, 2012

I could not believe I was seeing this when it came winging down the headwaters of the Missouri at me, but sure enough, here was not one, but five beautiful white pelicans.

Right there in the bed of the Three Forks, Montana. They were casually floating along the Missouri River headwaters as they merged with the Jefferson River, Madison River and the Gallatin River before heading on their journey to the Mississippi River.

This guy had a fish that he had snagged from the river, which was a lot better than the lady fly fishing upstream from him was doing.

The white pelican apparently travels all over the country and is protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. He was the last thing I expected to see when I went to see the landing site of the great Lewis and Clark expedition.

Photo of the Month of March, 2012

The 1950 Ford was the next year of the redesigned 1949 Ford, which generated over $177 million in profits for the Ford Motor Company. These restyled vehicles were in the garages of returning servicemen and their mothers. Over 28 million people wandered into showrooms across the country within three days of the day the 1949 rolled out.

These vehicles are not rare, but even in their excessive popularity, there is still something uniquely proud about the nose of these cars.

While this one watches me from behind barn brush, it still has the character and personality of the good looking car it was in its heyday.

Photo of the Month of February, 2012

partridge in Montana
5 partridge in the yard ©jcleveland

Photo of the Month of February, 2012

5 Partridge in the yard.

Sounds a lot like a CSNY song, but these little guys have taken up residence in the front yard. They are skittish and fly off and about willy nilly if they are startled, but they are extremely social and enjoy moving about as a group.

They appear to be grey partridge and for the longest time, I have called them grouse. No wonder they always looked at me funny.

They do love to hide under the bushes and travel in this little group of five.

Photo of the Month of January, 2012

Gypsy Arcade in Virginia City, MT
Gypsy Arcade in Virginia City, MT @jcleveland

Within the walls of this historic building in the ghost town of Virginia City, Montana, lies the remains of a hideous fortune telling machine.

The gypsy fortune telling machine is one the last of its kind and it is one that speaks the fortune when you feed it a nickel.

There is a nice write up on the machine on a history site.
You can read about the wrangling over the machine by collectors and other people who wish to make money by becoming the owner.

In the meantime, this store front is part of the ghost town of Virginia City, Montana, where I happened to find myself one fine winter day. In addition to the old mining city, the next door neighbor, Nevada City, Montana, is another wonderfully rich ghost town.