It was quite possibly the largest dragonfly I’ve ever seen.
My niece Avalon and I were back to a location I’d been to twice already in search of a geocache that had me completely stumped. I brought Avie there while we were out looking for a handful of other caches because I needed a fresh pair of eyes. Fresh eyes didn’t help. The search did bring me to a wonderful location that I’d wanted to explore but never had despite having lived just two miles from it for fifteen years. An old railroad bridge.
We took the opportunity to take a foot picture by an old railroad spike. Avalon is wearing her pink plastic lawn flamingo slip-on Vans (a tribute to her mother).
We failed in our search for the cache. On our way back to the car I spotted this dragonfly about six feet up the trunk of some kind of eucalyptus tree. In vain I attempted to capture him on my digital camera. I sure wished I’d had my trusty 35 mm Canon EOS Elan with me. I tried regular settings, macro settings, standing back and zooming in. I tried it from all kinds of angles and approaches, but I could not get a good picture. The best one, this one, was taken from about eight feet back, zoomed in, and with a flash. Avalon was convinced that this big guy (probably five inch wing span) was dead. She poked at him a few times with a long stick, and declared “Yup. He’s dead.” Just then he took off! He’d had enough of her. It scared us both a bit. A bug that big flying around makes a heck of a lot of noise. (And I instinctively opened my mouth to keep him from sewing it shut!
Look at those gorgeous colors and patterns on him. I’m so disappointed that I couldn’t get a better shot, but I am pleased that you can see the veining in the gossamer of his wings.
We found four other caches in short order that day. One of them posing as a reflector on a phone pole was a work of geocache art!