John & Anne Wiley

2014/09/17

Scary Beauty

Filed under: Has Photos,Inner World,Nature,Random,SB Region — John @ 00:46

We live in a paradise that’s scary beautiful. Like this view from the waiting room of a medical clinic downtown.

142223 Everyday Beauty

142223 Everyday Beauty

Almost scary how beautiful this is. But there’s another way this view can be scary for locals on days like this. Here’s a pic of those mountains from May 5, 2009 not long after some volunteer with a weed whacker was clearing brush from one of the myriad great local hiking trails.

5895 Jesusita Fire

5895 Jesusita Fire

In only a few hours, thousands of acres had burned and many homes destroyed. This was during one of our hot dry wind events that make fires more likely, more destructive, and more difficult and dangerous for firefighters. Today, with the whole region in Exceptional drought conditions, we’re having another such wind event. This is a type of scary beauty.

2014/09/10

High & Outside

One of the many things we love about flying is how it’s so different every time. When we used to drive from SB to SD, any variation was a welcome respite from what often presented as monotony at best (frustration and danger at worst). So those dreaded drives perhaps made flying to SD even more fun for us. For example, going much higher than our usual 1-4.5k’ and faster than our usual 110mph.

5836 High Outside LA

5836 High Outside LA

Here offshore looking back across Palos Verdes to LA and beyond, it felt a little like the brief glimpse from an airliner as it takes off. This was about 10,000 feet and going 150mph or so. Unlike an airliner though, we enjoyed the view through wide open windows rather than a small hazy plastic porthole. Unlike the airline view this lasted an hour rather than a couple of minutes during climb or descent. This height also gave us some fun (and safe) views of those airliners.

5815 Outside

5815 Outside

Though we were safely outside the 3D corridors in the air for airline departures and arrivals, a cropped view like this max zoom shot can give the impression of a menacing white shark. For we who know how safe flying is, it’s all about fun and excitement mingled with some concern for the thousands of people down on those dangerous roads. During our stay in SD we even took a break from fun with family to explore the area from back down at our preferred altitude, intimate with the earth but not bound by it.

5857 La Jolla Jolly

5857 La Jolla Jolly

In half an hour or so, we took in so much beauty and stoked up so much happiness it made sitting in SD traffic again almost tolerable. :)

Along the coast somewhere near Torrey Pines I spotted this spiral rip tide outside the break. Surfers seemed to be using it for access to the rides generated by a hurricane off Mexico.

5925 Outside Perspective

5925 Outside Perspective

We’ve enjoyed riding rip tides, but didn’t know how they look in context until flying. From down there on the water, we’d never have guessed this one was making an unusual spiral pattern. High and outside our normal perspective, we see the world anew.

2014/09/03

Contrasts

As the drought slowly drains Lake Cachuma, the valley is a land of contrasts. This islet that appeared where there was once open water, now sports eroded edges to windward up to dusty brown and back down to verdant shades of green along the shallower shore.

5695 Contrasts

5695 Contrasts

On a high ridge not far away, in this long zoom shot a buck silently seeks a doe all but oblivious to the contrasting distant song of our passing plane.

5643 Looking For Love

5643 Looking For Love

Far beneath where boaters had fished the deep bottom, now an old highway bridge resonates with the forgotten sound of 1930s automobiles rumbling past the farm buildings that stood on those now bare foundations washed by decades of waves.

5697 Contrasting Times

5697 Contrasting Times

This eastern end of the lake is now a green valley, and the treed island where that farm once stood is now a hillock surrounded by furrowed rings left as the water ebbed.

5696 Green, Brown, and Water

5696 Green, Brown, and Water

2014/09/01

Surf Line

We had the great pleasure last Wednesday of flying epic local surfer and adventurer Dave Powdrell along the coast from SB to Malibu and back, taking in the great waves. Mist Blowing off the back of this one glinted for a rainbow moment in the sun.

5477 Rainbow Roller

5477 Rainbow Roller

Surfers had converged from far and wide all along the coast, and the best spots were alive with great shared rides like this.

5383 Triple Play

5383 Triple Play

Up here removed a bit from the thrill of surfing, we could also see a contemplative quality that’s emphasized by freezing a moment like this.

5395 Water Colors

5395 Water Colors

With rides so abundant, many surfers enjoyed a beautiful wave all to themselves that they might remember for years.

5423 Solo Slice

5423 Solo Slice

Though the best waves we saw were along the shore from Pt. Mugu to Malibu, back at the SB Breakwater people were having a great time where ripples usually lap serenely against the rocks.

5560 Change of Pace

5560 Change of Pace

2014/08/23

“Fuller” Flying Experience

The little town of Santa Paula has a great airport, and at the heart of the field is Fuller Aircraft Services. Our friend Glenn Fuller and his happy crew have kept us flying safely and within our budget almost since the day I started flying. His mastery of the art and science of maintaining aircraft has done the same for countless other aviators, and we are thankful.

5168 Fuller Aircraft Services

5168 Fuller Aircraft Services

Behind the fuel pump at the middle of this pic is his hangar #9 hangout where maintenance magic happens. A parade of airport regulars dropped by to say hi as he gave Tripp her annual careful inspection. He also did a few of the minor upgrades we request each year and still presented a bill within our budget. Thank you Glenn!

Tripp was all spiffy and happy as our spirits were treated to new discoveries like the paintball playground at the bottom left of this next pic.

5168 S.Paula Paintball

5168 S.Paula Paintball

Back toward Santa Barbara we again enjoyed the colorful flower fields by the red barn at the edge of this folksy little town.

5159 SP Flowers

5159 SP Flowers

Across the hills we left the warm dry air of the Santa Paula Valley past Lake Casitas and wound our way down through the broken clouds along the high foothills where mansions survey the Channel.

5154 Carp Hill Manse

5154 Carp Hill Manse

Glenn has launched us into another year of flying fun. What familiar scenes will we survey anew? Which direction will we point Tripp’s nose next?

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