geococcyx (from ge, earth, and kokkyks, cuckoo) californianus (of California)
Saturday, March 31, 1984 — 3:15 pm
Tucson, Arizona — Old Spanish Trail near Saguaro National Monument
Dad had a counseling session in the afternoon, so we dropped him off at the apartment. Mom took Sally and me to the Rincon Mountain Unit of the Saguaro National Monument. We had to drive through Tucson to get there, and I wasn’t impressed by the town. It seemed like a large suburb in search of a city. The town is not very pretty or very clean. The surrounding area is beautiful, the town I can do without.
We were pretty close to the park when a Greater Roadrunner ran across the road into the parking lot of a sporting goods store. It paused under a small tree along the pavement then disappeared into the surrounding desert scrub. I had determined this was a must bird for the trip. I was now able to relax some.
A few days later I saw another one on the desert floor below the mouth of Sabino Canyon. It was walking along the trail ahead of me and jumped on a perch five feet up in a mesquite.