Terrain change

PacO haystacks mist

We began the day with a beach-visit, and rewarded with mists in the inlets and expanses of shadows and sunlight, and just pure ocean loveliness. And haystacks.


Then, we tried closed-in views beneath massive redwoods and their forest friends, which include low-down rotting sibling redwoods and green ferns.

Redwood pileup

This pile-up will stick with me. Three giants that, over time, fell atop one another. I think the top one came down since we were here last, and the bottom two must be darned strong to make a REDwood splinter like that. You have no visual scale…these each would take something like five-or-more people to reach around (if you could get to them).

River mist

As we rolled among the mountains, if we crossed or went along a river, we saw more mist, as we had at the coast. Very decorative.

To pass logging trucks and hay trucks and refrigerator trucks, JCB sometimes used Ludicrous* mode. Very vroom!

CA lake country

We turned inland, and discovered Californ-y has a lake country. Reservoirs, really, but even sailboats.

CA oak scrub grass

We’re really heading inland at this point, with the redwood forests and higher rainfall of the coast behind us, replaced by these mossy oaks, some very gnarly.

Rolling mostly grass

Ah, the continuing lowered rainfall…the mountains are now hills, and trees are fewer and particular about where their feet are…drainages preferred….

Flat central valley sunset

And, whoop! Around the last curve and over a hill, and we faced flat. Central Valley flat. Massive flatness. Of course, there’s a downhill trend, but most of the other variation has been removed by zealous agriculturalists, making our home grocery stores’ bounty of fragile veggies possible through our winter months.

We also discovered that the flat ground hosts terrible traffic backups. Lost the better part of an hour in three of them. One hoped-for escape route that we tried ended in a surprise “road closed”; Plan Z required!

* “Ludicrous” term thanks to Mel Brooks. Homages on the screen are as recent as “Good Behavior,” where it was applied to a Tesla. Hrumph; Prius Primes, too!


  1. kayak woman says:

    Last December 28th, we had a sleet storm and a tree fell down during it, right around this time of day (late afternoon, after dark). It fell across the sidewalk to the schoolyard, in between the two sections of woods. I shudder to remember that Liz (who was here for a few days) had been just about to strap on my Yax and walk downtown to meet up with friends. The GG gave her a ride instead. That was random. We didn’t know about the tree until the next morning when I tried to walk through there at 0-skunk-30. It was pitch black and I ran into a bunch of branches and stuff.

  2. Sammy says:

    Trees are mighty creatures; we think of them as standing upright, however! Maybe shedding a branch…but the whole thing tumbling down…so rare. Except when it’s not. [And between the two of us lucky ones, we have avoided many….]