Juniper in red sandstone at Paria Canyon, Utah

Jim Conrad's
Spring Comes to the

January 1 to April 12, 1988

(Book can be downloaded in various formats here.)

  1. The Escape -- On the day after Christmas I leave Kentucky for the Desert Southwest

    AMISTAD RESERVOIR NEAR DEL RIO, TEXAS: Shaded-relief map of region

  2. Dog-Bill's Walk -- Dog-Bill introduces me to the local flora
  3. A Gully-Mud Skull -- How identifying a skull found in the desert becomes a meditation
  4. Four Deserts from A Wet Tent -- An overview of   North America's four deserts
  5. Gnawings, Nibblings & Scats -- Interpreting the leavings of jackrabbits, deer and others
  6. Bird List #1: The Desert's Edge -- Birds seen one morning along Amistad Reservoir

    BIG BEND NATIONAL PARK, TEXAS: Shaded -relief map of region

  7. Echinocereus triglochidiatus var octacanthusBig Bend's First Lessons -- I am chastened during my first moments at Big Bend
  8. Seven Peccaries -- A close call with some peccaries
  9. Big Bend Backpacking Trip #1 -- Six days in the desert, and spring's first signs
  10. Bird List #2: Big Bend as Spring Begins -- Birds seen during three hours of the above hike
  11. Big Bend Backpacking Trip #2 -- Five and a half days in the Chisos foothills
  12. Cactus Orientation -- Looking at the basics of cactus identification
  13. Slumgullion #1 -- Miscellaneous short notes from Big Bend

    CORONADO NATIONAL FOREST, NEW MEXICO: Shaded-relief map of region

  14. Across the Continental Divide -- From Big Bend to New Mexico's Peloncillo Mtns.
  15. Denizens of a Strange-Feeling Forest -- Trees, wildflowers and cacti around my camp
  16. Six Mexican Jays -- A story of six jays with strong personalities
  17. Hiking to Skeleton Canyon -- Meeting some interesting birds, ferns and more
  18. At the University of Arizona -- A Sunday morning on the UA campus

    FIVE MILES SW OF SELLS, ARIZONA: Shaded-relief map of region

  19. Saguaro Country -- Entering the Sonoran Desert with its Saguaro cacti
  20. Random Sonoran Observations at Dawn -- Just that
  21. Saguaro by Starlight -- Sleeping next to a Saguaro

    TEN MILES SE OF AJO, ARIZONA: Shaded-relief map of region

  22. Bird List #3: A Sonoran list -- Special notes on a Gambel's Quail and a Raven
  23. Six Spring Wildflowers -- Profiles of six Sonoran wildflowers
  24. Looking for Lizards & Mammals -- A trip finding some lizards and squirrels
  25. A Mouse's Tale -- I build a non-violent mousetrap
  26. Slumgullion #2 -- Miscellaneous short notes from the Sonoran
  27. IMPERIAL SAND DUNES WEST OF YUMA, CALIFORNIA: Shaded-relief map of region

  28. Sand Dunes -- First impressions are a bit numbing
  29. The Sand at Dawn -- Discoveries among the dunes
  30. Two Roundtail Ground Squirrels -- Mysterious behavior of two small ground squirrels


  31. 232 Feet Below Sea Level -- First birds and plants seen at Salton Sea
  32. Tilapia Island -- A big wind heaps up dead fish along shore


  33. Juan Calderregel -- While repairing Henry I meet a Mexican
  34. Wildflowers of the High Mojave -- More spring wildflowers blossoming than seen so far
  35. The Big Joke -- Philosophy inspired by desert and bombs

    THROUGH DEATH VALLEY: Shaded relief map of region

  36. Death Valley -- Awed by the Valley but unable to find a place to stop

    MINING AREA NEAR BEATTY, NEVADA: Shaded relief map of region

  37. Rocks & Minerals -- Interpreting the geology of an unvegetated valley
  38. Slumgullion #3 -- Miscellaneous short notes from near Beatty

    PEACE CAMP NEAR MERCURY, NEVADA: Shaded relief map of region

  39. Peace Camp -- I fall in with some protesters
  40. We are All Crystals -- Philosophy among the protesters at the entrance gate

    EAST SLOPE OF CHARLESTON PEAK, NEVADA: Shaded relief map of region

  41. Sky Island -- Climbing to the snow line on Charleston Peak
  42. A Two-treed Forest -- Woody plants at 8000 feet elevation

    BESIDE LAKE MEAD EAST OF LAS VEGAS, NEVADA: Shaded relief map of region

  43. Bird Lists #4, #5 & #6 -- Three short lists from places with few birds

    ZION NATIONAL PARK, UTAH: Shaded relief map of region

  44. Into the Great Basin Desert -- A mind-boggling drive to Zion
  45. Backpacking Zion National Park -- Three days of hiking

    DESERT 20 MILES EAST OF KANAB, UTAH: Shaded relief map of region

  46. Walking through Sagebrush -- Lay of the land here and how it feels
  47. Confessions from beside a Sagebrush Fire -- Why I'm not going to Grand Canyon
  48. Mule Deer -- A mystical experience with a beautiful creature

    PARIA CANYON UTAH, 30 MILES NW OF PAGE, ARIZONA: Shaded relief map of region

  49. Backpacking Paria -- Wandering a very rugged, daunting landscape


  50. Slumgullion #4 -- Miscellaneous notes from along Lake Powell

    WITH THE HARRISES IN MONUMENT VALLEY, UTAH: Shaded relief map of region

  51. The Harrises' Front Yard -- Diane Harris introduces me to the plants around her house
  52. Skin Walker -- Diane tells me her Skin Walker story
  53. View from The Mesa -- Last views and thoughts