Memories of snow

We were up in the Sierra mountains during the peak of the snow. People were out taking photos, having fun and shoveling out.SONY DSC

Drought is determined by the level of snowpack in the Sierras in March. We went from a low of 58 inches of snow a couple years ago to about 48 feet of snow this year.

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Winter recreation has been amazing this year, although there is such thing as too much snow to ski. The roads leading up to the ski areas were basically closed in February. Not just snow, but mud slides were to blame.

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Road work on Interstate 80

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Mud slide on Interstate 80 covered by plastic

Digging out

Buried Chairlift

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There can be too much snow! But it’s nice to be out of the drought. We rid our property of all grass and only have drip watering to the plants we want to keep alive. We won’t put the grass back, but we have eased up on water rationing inside the house.

We still have a lot of snow in the mountains, and the ski resorts plan to stay open until July 4th, promising continued recreation into the early summer. Much fun lies ahead.

The best thing of all, Lake Tahoe is full again, and the Truckee River is flowing. Fish and wildlife will thrive, and the forest is a dark, rich green.

 

Back in the saddle

Sorry for the long break in posting. I am starting again.

I’ve been taking photos, reading, and using our new home cardio machine. I try to do 90 minutes on it most days and then I’m tired! The days do seem to click by. I should say they fly by but that’s not really true because I slowed down a lot. I want to enjoy life, not to feel rushed. I took a big break, I relax more, and I would say that I get more out of each moment, but time does still fly.

Spring has sprung in parts of the world, including ours.

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Moon over plum blossoms

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Ants like the plum blossoms

Have a great rest of the week.

Bodega Bay California

The rain stopped just in time for our planned overnight to this coastal town. Neither one of us had been here before. It’s a cute town with gorgeous scenery located in Sonoma County. We arrived in the evening and braved some cold and wind to take shots of the bay, town and harbor.

This is shot from the breakwater at Spud Harbor.

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This is shot from outside Gourmet Au Bay, a wine-tasting place right on the water.

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The town is best known for being the site of the Alfred Hitchcock film, The Birds. Fortunately the birds are, in reality, cute and pretty.

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We had breakfast at The Tides at the Wharf, a restaurant and inn that replaced the original where The Birds was filmed. The new building is lovely with high ceilings and beautiful wood open beams with tongue-and-groove roof paneling. The tables overlook the calm bay where we watched ducks and, unfortunately, a drone. I didn’t photograph that, but it flew in and hovered over the birds, scaring a few into relocating. It was probably somebody wanting close up photos of the birds. Wait until there are hundreds of amateur drones hovering out there. It will be hideously ugly. I have some science fiction short stories I’m working on about drones, just taking a look at some of the unintended consequences of the coming nightmare, should they be approved for widespread use.

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At Bodega Head, the cliffs block tumultuous waves that make for gorgeous photography. It’s a state park with bathrooms and parking and has a high accessibility-to-beauty ratio.

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There is a famous tree out there, famous in the sense that it is oft photographed. It’s really quite striking. As a friend of mine pointed out, it’s easy to see which way the wind usually blows.

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Cutting back to Highway 101, we passed by beautiful working farms, a lot of them organic dairy. I even saw a farm that participates in the organic cooperative whose milk I buy: Organic Valley.

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Sorry  I missed a few posts. I really didn’t have any new photos. It was raining continuously, so I couldn’t get out. The Bodega Bay trip was the first dry day in a couple weeks. I’ll be able to milk these shots for a few more posts, so please do continue to check in on Mondays and Fridays. I will be getting more photos!

Have a great weekend.

 

Child’s play

My previous photos mostly concealed the fact that there were a lot of people out there with me enjoying a gorgeous winter day. Santa Cruz tends to be warmer in the winter than where I live, down in the valley near the San Francisco bay.

So here is the human element of Natural Bridges, the best part–children.

Mind you, I wasn’t trying to get photos of children or people at all. When I saw this image though, I was glad I accidentally caught this little girl at the edge of my frame. Next time I’ll pay more attention to the human element in the composition as I think it adds a lot of interest to the scenery.

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Another accidental shot, I love how the dad is kicking his foot in the air.childs-play-at-natural-bridges-2

That’s the beauty of digital photography and Lightroom–you can take a lot of photos and get some surprising captures that way.

I hope you are having a nice weekend!