Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Course clean up at the San Diego Crew Classic

We wondered what this boat was doing when we first saw it.  There was a man in the front holding onto a huge red rake -- a leaf rake on the water?   We kept an eye on him as he slowly moved up & down the course.  Finally saw the reason:  course clean up!   Probably the most thankless job of the day!   But a very critical job --  if these clumps of seaweed got on the course they could slow a boat down.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Wonderful day on the water with my camera.

I volunteered to be at the San Diego Crew Classic today.  Mission Bay Yacht Club for many years has provided support for course safety & clearance.   The course area (Fiesta Island) is closed two days out of the year to provide safe racing for the crews.   MBYC provides help keeping it safe.  I was on an escort boat this morning.  Any boats, kayaks, canoes, jet skies, stand up paddlers that wish to cross the course are escorted.  We wait until a race is underway & the top part of the course is clear, then escort the boats across to another waiting boat who takes them over to the other side.

Meanwhile, I had my camera and was busy taking photos!   Here are a few favorites from the day.  The SDCC ran 114 races in two days.   You can see some info SD Crew Classic  at the link.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Birds and a lizard in June's yard (Wickenburg AZ)

We enjoyed sitting on June's patio and watching the birds that came to her feeder and the trees surrounding her yard.  Also saw a beautiful lizard, which I think  is the Western Fence lizard.  If I've mislabeled any of the birds or the lizard, please let me know.

Doves nesting high in the palms


House finch

Western fence lizard

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Arizona Road Trip

Officially  the Route 66 part of the road trip ended with the WigWam Teepees in Holbrook AZ.

We returned to Flagstaff, and stayed in the wonderful Little America Hotel.  I highly recommend this hotel & their dining room, but especially recommend the Chocolate Martini I enjoyed before dinner!

From Flagstaff we drove south and enjoyed the hospitality of a friend, June, in Wickenburg AZ.  We enjoyed sitting on June's patio bird watching and some photography here too.    She took us to a local junk yard where we really had a lot of photo ops.  Spent the morning there, then back to town for a great lunch.

Here a few photos from the junk yard (south of Wickenburg).   This is a very tidy (!) well kept junk yard (not that I've been in many others).   Everything was lined up -- one area had half barrels each filled with door handles, misc parts, another section had hoods lined up, then tires, piles &  piles of tires.   We had the run of the place, drove from one section to another, did our photography then drove on to another section.  Yes, it's that large!  More photos to come in a later blog.

Owner Reed

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Route 66: Wigwam Village, Holbrook AZ

One of the places I wanted to stay on our road trip was the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook AZ .  For info on the Wigwam Motel  check out the link.  Highly recommended for the "fun" factor of being able to say "I slept in a wigwam".   By the way, they are made of cement (well insulated) and have a heater, so they do stay plenty warm for the cool Arizona nights.

Check in here.  Wifi in the office, comfy lounge area with a
wood-burning stove for heat.  

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Route 66: Twin Arrows

One of our stops along Route 66 was at the Twin Arrows Trading Post ruins.  It took a few U-turns to find the parking spot, but we persisted & found it!   There is a cement barrier (shown in the right hand side of the first photo), and a narrow opening that took us back in the ruins.      The first photo shows the area from our parking spot.

View of the Twin Arrows from our parking spot (you can barely see the
tops of the arrows behind the buildings).    

Getting closer!  
Twin Arrows

Twin Arrows with moon 
 I couldn't help playing around with the Twin Arrows and the moon (moon photos were taken in my backyard at the last full moon.  I do love playing around with Photoshop!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Route 66, Barstow train station

The train station in Barstow has a rich history.

The original Harvey House burned in 1908, and the current one was built in 1910, designed by architect Mary E. J. Coulter and built by Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway.  Fred Harvey Company considered it to be their "premiere stop".   It was completed in 1910 and opened fully staffed on February 22, 1911.   According to many it is "the best surviving example of California's depot-hotels of the turn of the century."

I'm rereading a wonderful book "The Harvey Girls" that tells the story of Fred Harvey and the young woman he hired & trained to be his staff, not just at this station, but all of them he built.  We recently  learned that on 3/28/15 a few of the original Harvey Girls will be at the station to share their stories.

The day we were there was a rare sunny day for Terry & I and I seemed to be quite taken with the contrast of the intense blue sky with the different colors on the train cars.  It was an abstract day for me.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Route 66 California/Arizona Road Trip

We picked up Route 66 in Victorville CA and had a delightful stop at the Route 66 Museum.  A team of very enthusiastic volunteers shared their knowledge about the museum and Route 66 history.   They highly recommended Elmer's Bottle Tree Ranch on the National Trails Hwy on our way to Barstow.   Elmer Long began his welding on these "trees" in 1980s.  You can't miss it if you are on the highway and it is a fun stop.

What I liked about these "trees" are the toppers -- each one has a different top.  Tricycles, guns, mailboxes, anything he could find, goes on top.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Route 66 California/Arizona Road Trip

The first of many posts!   My friend Terry and I just returned from a road trip.   We spent 10 days driving through part of Route 66 (Victorville CA to Holbrook AZ), then south to visit a friend in Wickenburg AZ and finally, our last stop in Phoenix and the Botanic Garden.   Terry logged 1600+ miles on her odometer.  
I'm not starting with photos from the beginning of our trip, but decided to just post what catches my eye as I'm looking through all of them.  Hope you'll enjoy these, more to come.

These three were taken at the Petrified Forest National Park (between Flagstaff & Holbrook).   I was happy with the way they turned out, because we were there on a very overcast day.   It's beautiful no matter what the weather, and a place I'd like to return to one day.  

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Salton Sea, the Disappearing Sea

In the mid-1960s I camped on a beautiful beach in the Salton Sea.   I have wonderful memories of this camping trip where I learned how to water ski.  These memories include the bright sunlight, clear blue sparkling water, clean sandy beaches, bonfires, good company and good times.  

Fast forward to 2010 and another trip to the Salton Sea.  This time it was a trip to participate in a walk in different areas of the Sea with an environmentalist to learn about the history, changes and (hopefully) future of the Sea.  This was my first visit after 40+ years and I have a hard time describing the sadness I felt that day.  The contrast was just too much.  I found myself thinking of my visit years ago, memories of  clear blue sparkling water, and had a hard time comparing that with the dull color of the water today, no boats, no sandy beaches, left me with a feeling of sadness.

I've since had a few photography workshops and visits on my own to explore.  As I pulled up to a beach at the last workshop, I was again stunned by the bleakness of what I was seeing.  My first thoughts were "it's disappearing."    And it is.

When I was working on my photographs at home, it seemed appropriate to look at them with a sepia treatment.  Here are three of my photos from my last trip to the Disappearing Sea.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Out on the water again ...

This past Saturday I was out on a Race Committee boat photographing the Lasers Masters Regatta run by Mission Bay Yacht Club.  The races were held out in the ocean (vs in the bay).  We had quite a cold  morning anchored  (second & third photos show the ominous clouds).  The sun finally came out as you can see by the first photo.

The Lasers are a 13' boat, Olympic class dinghy and raced  in local clubs and internationally.  You can follow the link here if you are curious about these boats:  Lasers    This regatta had about 25 boats participate.  The first day was overcast, gray day, just a bit of rain, windy (good!) & swells.   In the morning the bad news was the shifty wind, not good for the race committee because it meant they  had to reset the marks, and not just once!   The swells made for some unusual photographs as you'll see.

View from the Race Committee boat, starting the second race.
The swells made for interesting photography.

Spotted the brown pelican while in the channel heading home.