Sorry for the blog silence, I’ll try to be more timely. Here is something very recent: I went out to the town of sites, population 13, at the beginning of the month. This area is west of I-5 40 mins north of Sacramento that is proposed for a new dam that will be very large. I figured I’d check it out before that happens.
On the way out, Mt Lassen in the distance with snow
A view west into the coast range from the valley. Snow Mountain to the right, Goat Mountain to the left
Little wisps of white at the top of Snow Mountain
The road to Sites from Maxwell
You pass through the first fold of the cost range
Can you see how it was thrust up?
Can you see the inverted rock layers here?
There is a very old quarry here, they mine Brownstone which is a dark sandstone. These first ridges of the range come from ancient sea floor deposits
You can see how they have peeled back the layers of stone
The most prominent structures completed with this stone include the freey building, emporium and st.francis hotel in San Francisco.
This place goes back to the mid 1800’s!
You can probably still get some of this stone from the property owner
Markings from the head of the quarry
There is a neighboring one that has been inactive for a long time
It has the same structure as the other side, but bigger
Once through the ravine, the sites valley opened up with meadows and hills rolling along
Very old town
Just a hand full of houses left, there have been several fires in the 20th century
But some holdouts
Maybe the old town store
The water will go up past the tree line about 75 feet, it will be a bit bigger than Lake Oroville
All of it is active pasture, which kills off all the wildfloers
So I’m less concerned about impacts from a dam here, the real show is on BLM land a ways over the ridge in bear valley
I almost went off-road to the north end/lobe of the proposed lake, but it was just more of the same
Hot springs and Lake County just over there
Views for days
Back into town
On the way out a Turkey Vulture was picking on road kill. I got a shot after scaring it off
Lots of wildflowers in the ravine though, where they will put a dam
The color evolves
Looks like a wild onion
Couldn’t get a close-up of these
Such a nice creek
This tree is covered in native, wild grape
These will become sweet, but seeded, grapes in the fall
Until next time…