Tree Skeletons

On Tuesday, my husband, our dog Maddie and I made a trip out to the edge of the Smoke Creek Desert. There was an old ranch, the Bonham ranch, abandoned for at least 75 years that I wanted to photograph. I have taken photos of it before but wanted to again as I believe I had learned a few things since the last time.
We got up early to be there at dawn. I thought I remembered where it was. It was still fairly dark when I saw some trees ahead showing where the ranch should be. Trees are a rare thing out here and usually there is something of interest if a place sports a few. At least there might be water.
We slowed down and didn’t see any buildings so we got into one of those discussions as we continued on rattling down the dirt road. “I think that was it.” But there weren’t any buildings?” “Did you see any buildings?” “No but that had to be it.” “It couldn’t have been. There was a ranch house and several outbuildings the last time we were here.” “It has been awhile maybe they burned down.” Ok, turn around let’s give it a look over.”
We were disappointed to say the least to see that all that was left of the ranch were charred ashes and a few trees. It looked like it had been burned down deliberately and everything hauled away. Not sure why that was done after so many years but gone is gone. I had to be satisfied with this photo of the tree at dawn.
We headed back the way we came hoping to see some antelope or desert bighorns. We stopped at Pyramid lake and walked through a lovely stand of Fremont Cottonwoods where I think I salvaged the trip with these black and white shots of dead trees.

25 thoughts on “Tree Skeletons

  1. Yes, Alison, there is something about the stark beauty of dead trees. I especially love those black and white images. Reminds me of the dead, gnarly mesquites in our west Texas desert.

    1. Hi seeker, yes it was frustrating to find them burned. Yes these two trees stood out as dead, I like dead trees or leafless trees as a photo subject. Thanks for dropping by and looking. πŸ™‚

  2. I had to stop and say I really like tree number three. The mood you captured (B&W helped with that) is perfect. My comment on those buildings; Here in British Columbia I am noticing more and more abandoned buildings being destroyed by land owners. I have been told that they worry about animals getting trapped.

    1. Thank you enman. That one is my favorite too. You know I think you are probably right about the reasons the buildings were taken down. These buildings straddled a road and I am sure they made an attractive and dangerous place for humans as well. Thanks for stopping in! πŸ™‚

  3. I’m saddened by the loss of the history…all the more reason to photograph what you see because it won’t always be there. Your photos are beautiful though. Best regards~

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