John & Anne Wiley

2012/02/28

What?

Filed under: Flying,Happiness,Has Photos,People,Random,SB Region — John @ 10:32

OK, first of all this.

0313 Exhibit A

0313 Exhibit A

What else can be said about living in this place and being able to fly over it with an angel at my side?

Clearly tho, I’m going to ruin this with more words & pix. So on this same day we saw the first and last. Starting with what I understand is the first park in Santa Barbara.

0303 Plaza De Vera Cruz

0303 Plaza De Vera Cruz

I’m guessing this city park looked a lot different back then, but then again so did everything else about the Santa Barbara region. Now I cut to the Chase.

0305 The Chase

0305 Chase Palm Park

A few blocks from the Cruz nearer the beach is this great park, I think the last created in town, here only partly shown. This end has the antique carousel and this cool oval thing. I don’t know if it’s supposed to be an outdoor theater or just a place to hang out. It’s usually empty except for people passing thru, but maybe there’s something else planned for it or we’ve just missed whatever goes on there. It’s a great place to start or end a wander thru the wide variety of attractions in this big little park, and it’s quite a contrast with the Cruz. Over the years spanning the creation of these two parks, people have changed and remained the same. So many things to love about SB, but so few words & pix.  sigh…

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2012/02/26

Bright Days

Spring offers some bright days when the mountains beckon us to fly. Usually when the mountains are crisp and clear, there are scenes like this waiting down at Goleta Beach when we take off.

0284 Crisp Colors

0284 Crisp Colors

The air can become almost invisible, and the full brightness of Santa Barbara colors sparkles from sea to peaks. On this day we got a “downwind” departure. That means we did the usual takeoff for small planes, heading out over the water between Goleta Pier and UCSB, but instead of flying further offshore we turned and headed back past the airport to the freeway before turning East toward the harbor. So this puts us closer to the mountains that coaxed us into the clear air.

0288 Mountain View

0288 Mountain View

This view of the mountains, before we reached Hwy.154, has a variety of places we enjoy. At the bottom-right is part of the creek trail from Tucker’s Grove Park up to Hwy.154 where it climbs up to a gravel parking area. Up on the slope above where you can see the highway cutting up toward the left is Painted Cave. Once we reached the harbor, the study in blue that had greeted us at takeoff presented this new panorama.

0315 Wavy Blue

0315 Wavy Blue

The clear air has great powers to clear the mind, briefly lifting the veil between seeing and being.

2012/02/24

Flying Colors

Night flying is fun and interesting, but sunset is far less subtle. The colors of sunset from the air are extremely difficult to photograph, but their impact is easy to remember. I’ve tweaked away at this pic approaching SBA to land, but it pales in comparison to being there even more than most aerial pix.

0271 SBA Sunset Aloft

0271 SBA Sunset Aloft

The exposure range is so wide that the land looks dark, or the sky is overexposed. The color variations in the sky were both more subtle and more extreme, but the land was perfectly clear. Once on the ground, as usual the show had shifted and everything seemed immediately darker the moment we landed.

0280 SBA Sunset

0280 SBA Sunset

The clouds spilling over the mountains were of course part of our view aloft too. I like how the control tower at the bottom-right stands guard against the darkness. Turning to the left I snapped again with UCSB in silhouette.

0282 UCSB Sunset

0282 UCSB Sunset

I’m putting a larger version of that last one on the Photo Page, because the colors approach the subtle riot of colors we saw. So often here sunsets splash a symphony of shapes, textures and colors to herald the night. I like to imagine the birds enjoy it as we do when flying.

2012/02/23

Cliff Dwellers

In the mountains behind Ojai are some sandstone cliffs that look perfect for cliff dwellers. High enough to provide a view and some safety, but not a long climb from food and water.

0266 Cliff Condo?

0266 Cliff Condo?

I imagine ingenious indigenous home improvement types using sticks and wicker to build a roof and deck onto that big hole near bottom-center. Nearby is a longer cliff wall with more options for housing starts.

0267 Hole in the Wall

0267 Hole in the Wall

Now maybe it’s hard to tell from this small low-res pic, but there are signs of current residents on the left side. Here’s a crop of that area.

0267 For the Birds

0267 For the Birds

Looks like the bottom of that hole at the upper-left has a bird-finished white floor. I wonder if any humans ever did live here, or at least maybe extended migratory seasonal camp-outs. As we began descent over Ojai toward Santa Paula, I noticed how similar the mountains are to our view from home. Maybe my ancient ancestors passed this way, and that’s why these mountains are so familiar and beautiful to me.

0269 Hills of Home

0269 Hills of Home

2012/02/20

California

I’ve said it many times: California is my favorite place. One of the attractions of living in the beautiful blue and green of Santa Barbara is that only 30-some minutes of Tripp time away is a place named California Valley. It’s on the Carrizo Plain where Soda Lake always presents interesting shapes for aerial viewing.

0221 Seuss Pond

0221 Seuss Pond

This one I’ll call Seuss Pond is a prime example. It’s fascinating to me how the shapes emerge from what seems on the ground to be a perfectly flat dry lake bed. The whole lake is festooned with fanciful shapes that change as the rain water evaporates. You can see part of Seuss Pond at the bottom-right of this wider shot that still doesn’t show the whole lake.

0224 Soda Lake

0224 Soda Lake

Circling to look more closely at Seuss Pond the textures and subtle colors stand out much more clearly.

 

0228 Textures

0228 Textures

An integral part of this surreal landscape is the enchanting ancient hangout now known as Painted Rock, and home to nesting Peregrine Falcons. We never tire of looking at this magical stone alcove, and communing with the palpable presence of those who have enjoyed it for millennia. The opening beckons those who would walk in to sit in silence as we have done, contemplating the rock art and attending to the sounds of silence.

0237 Painted Rock

0237 Painted Rock

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