Friday, July 20, 2012

sinuous reds

Dusty and sweaty, having finished up a day of climbing.  Mountain Man spotted a colorful snake that I wanted to get a good look at.  A bit pouty, I sat on a rock -- knitting my red sweater -- and waited for the snake to emerge from under a boulder so that I could see it too. (By the way, there's my cabled chalk bag making a cameo appearance.)

It's back!! C'mere!!

Let's go get it!!

I climbed on top of the boulder, precariously balancing myself to try to get a picture of this beautiful little Arizona Mountain Kingsnake (Lampropeltis pyromelana):

Once it had come out a little further, I scampered down and behind it to get a closer look at its incredible body.  Its Latin name means "shiny-scaled fire-against-black."   What an evocative name!

After a healthy dose of snake-watching, we hiked back to the car.  I thought I'd show you how far I'd gotten with the body of my sweater -- already up to the waist.

I started with a thick border of 1x1 ribbing, then switched to stockinette with a simple mirrored cable on each side.  There's a bit of waist shaping in there. Slipped selvedge stitches.  Once I'm finished with the body I'll pick up those stitches and knit the button bands in 1x1 ribbing. 

One of my tricks with cables is to start with fewer stitches and then do increases behind the first cable crosses. These cables are 8 stitches wide -- they're half of a Staghorn cable -- but I started with 6 stitches.  This avoids flaring at the base (although here, perhaps it would have been enough to just go down to 7 stitches -- it's a bit straight).

And here's Mountain Man and Isis playing tug of war, waiting for me to finish all my snake-watching and yarn-photographing. All right -- I'm coming!


nordwolke said...

Funny and amazing "photo story". :)

Robin V said...

Love that last shot of the snake - such an interesting texture

Acorn to Oak said...

What a pretty snake! I can see why you were anxious to get a glimpse of it and some pictures.

Thanks for sharing your tip on cables and the increase.

KiniaCat Crafts said...

Spiffy pictures!
Thank you for the cable-clues too!

Rachel said...

Your photo interpretation of waiting to catch the snake in action has me laughing this morning! And what a beautiful snake...I don't think I've seen one so colorful...thanks for sharing the pictures of it!

And thanks for the tip on cables and increasing...I never thought about it before but judging from your pictures, it works perfectly!