untitled Bird on cactus

This variety of bird is one I have seen before, but seldom and never this close. He flew over, landed on the cactus, then sat there looking at me long enough to get out the camera. Pretty unusual to land so close and hang around after seeing me.

This bird was the start of a series of improbable events.

A bit further down the trail I noticed a skunk about twenty feet away going the same direction, parallel to the trail. After a few dozen feet the skunk disappeared into some brush. I see skunks maybe a few times each year.

Just a little further down the trail an unusual animal popped out of a hole in the ground, directly in front of me, in the middle of the trail. I have seen what I thought was the local burrowing critter a few times - a mole-like creature with gold/gray/brown fur. The critter I saw today I have never seen before. A weasel-like critter with black snout, a white mask that extended as stripes down lower sides, and a brown back.

Closer to the bottom of Dreaded Hill came across a small black case containing a multi-function bike tool, no doubt jarred off a passing mountain bike on the descent. Now it is not unusual to find lost water bottles on the (rather steep) descent, but this is the first time for something like this.

Each event by itself was unusual, but not surprising. Taken in combination, the combined probability is a bit exteme. By the time I got to the bottom of the hill, I half-expected to bump into Alice and the White Rabbit around the next bend in the trail.

Improbable.