Well-Nigh Wordless Wednesday: Brrr…

My advisor and I take our Aquatic Entomology students on two 3-day camping trips, one in southern Arizona and one in northern Arizona.  The latter often involves snow or freezing rains, miserably cold nights, and roaring campfires.  Sometimes it’s warm during the day, but other times it’s more like this:

Cold students


Granted, a lot of Arizonans break out the parkas when it gets below 55 degrees, but it was genuinely cold on this particular trip!


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16 thoughts on “Well-Nigh Wordless Wednesday: Brrr…

    • To me, genuinely cold is anything below freezing. Arizonans tend to get cold below 60, but that’s not really “cold” by most people’s standards and we get a lot of flack for it. So, I apply the stamdard of “How cold would it have been to prevent my wearing shorts when I was a kid in Colorado?” because it is a more widely accepted measure of “cold.” That was right around freezing, though I do remember a few instamces when I was standing at the bus stop at 6:30 in the morning wearing snow boots and shorts too… I was crazy then!

  1. Chris,
    Just out of curiosity, what sort of aquatic macroinvertebrates did you gather on this trip, in such weather–the same distribution of species you’d find in balmier weather??

    • The pond in the photos is actualy a bit of a vernal pool, only there as the snow melts in the mountains, so it’s a little soarsely populated by insects. We find a ton of great stuff in rivers and streams nearby though! Those mountains are a great place to collect at any time of year. There are mamy species of caddissfly, several stonefly species, blepharicerids, water pennies, crambid moths… Those great collecting areas are unfortunately also in the area where the Wallow Fire burned last summer, so it will be interesting to see if the streams recover there or not into the future. It would be really sad if they didn’t…

  2. Here in Florida, I have family that start complaining about the cold when it hits 70. (I wish I was making that up, I really do.)

    Personally, I don’t even own a long sleeved shirt and haven’t found cause to wear a jacket since I was old enough that my mother couldn’t make me wear it anymore. : – )

    • People do that here too! I do own a couple of coats, mostly for going on this one field trip and a few other camping trips, though every now and again we’ll have a cold day in town where I’m happy to have the coat. Normally I wear sweaters over a t-shirt and call it good. On Christmas, I was actually a little warm in my tee – and there were butterflies flying. Butterflies! How can people be cold when there are butterflies out? :)

    • Oh, I miss the winters in Colorado! Crazy storms that dumped 6 feet of snow intermingled with downright warm days where you could comfortably wear shorts. It was so unpredictable. You’re certainly right about it being a dry cold too! I now live in a desert – an honest to goodness desert – and I use about 1/10th the chapstick and hand lotion I did in Colorado. Wow was the winter brutal toward my skin! Still, I miss it.

  3. Any leeches there?
    You know one should get bitten by leeches sometime. I used to be dead scared of leeches, and then on a 2 day trek across the Chikmaglur (India) hills, we camped on a place that had the ground crawling with leeches like ants. The leeches had a grand extended buffet dinner, and we had a reasonable sleep.
    And then during that trip it was raining, and we were walking desperately to find a camping ground. There was this one leech which had crawled on to my tail bone, and it kept nibbling on my skin for half an hour. I didn’t have the time to remove it in the rain, and that bugger just couldn’t get a hold and kept biting painfully. Its actually a myth that leech bites don’t hurt. If they don’t get a blood vessel, they keep biting till they do.

    But after the first leech bite, you lose your fears about those WIGGLY LITTLE THINGS.

    • You know, I’m not sure if there are leeches in that pond or not. I haven’t actually crawled in and collected there many times, usually because it’s cold. :) We do have leeches in my area (they are fascinating to watch swimming through the water, but they aren’t the kind that latch on to people. I can’t say that I’m missing out by never having a leech feed on me though. :)

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