Adventures in Mexico part VII
14th November 2014
Game plan for the day. Phil and I decided to opt out of the climb up the cliff and stick around town. My knees have been playing me up of late (isn’t getting old great!) and I didn’t fancy the journey down too much. I didn’t fancy the climb up, either, to be honest. Mark and Neil headed off early to get up there before midday sun made it a blast furnace up there whilst Phil and I enjoyed a leisurely breakfast then a stroll around. Big old church, dating back to C16th. Big market.
This gate has a mural composed of beans and grains and is replaced annually!
There seems to me to be something counter-intuitive about eating ice-cream in Mexico but most towns have ice-cream parlours of some sort or another, even sometimes those in the middle of tiny desert towns. This one is quite famous with shops all over town. All hand-made and the two flavours I tried were delicious.
Around 1pm and Neil and Mark returned looking none the worse for their trudge up and down the cliff. Reports of a much branched trunked nolina got me interested. Surely not a third undescribed species? But not interested enough to go up. Well, not this time – pics courtesy of Neil Armstrong.
A friendly coati – disappointed not to share any lunch with the boys.
After lunch Neil stayed on to do some touristy things while Mark, Phil and I drove up and around to see if we could get near to the temple from the back. Nearly, but not quite – however we did see a lot of interesting things.
An Echeveria sp and Montanoa grandiflora (thanks Chad)
A shrubby Sedum – possibly a variant of Sedum dendroideum or maybe Sedum confusum.
The local large Tillandsia sp was very impressive – this inflorescence was dangling down fully 80cm
We parked up and went for a wander, ending up at a canyon on the opposite side of which was something I didn’t immediately recognise, plastered along the vertical cliff face. Back to the car and, conveniently I thought, we found a disused railway line which we were able to drive along for a while – this took us very close to the canyon again and close enough to get a good look at the plant. Agave dasylirioides, as it turned out. These pictures are Phil’s – he had a better camera.
My picture this time (and you can see why I used Phil’s…) one with much more pink-red flowers. And a brightly coloured caterpillar.
All in all it was a bit of a lazy cop-out day but a little botany to finish off with to assuage the guilt. Another great meal in town.