John & Anne Wiley


Fire Water Mix

You probably saw this region in the news (and this blog), first for our drought and then our fires. For example, flying near Camarillo the Woolsey Fire provided a tragic sort of beauty looking toward Point Dume.


Woolsey Fire

Wind was whipping the water from the Oxnard area toward sunset beyond the Channel Islands, making for a otherworldly scene.


9575 Surreal Sunset

The coastal slopes of our own Santa Ynez Mountains had begun to recover from the horrific Thomas Fire, but were still mostly bare. Tangerine Falls just to the right of the bottom center, was scrubbed clean and nearly unrecognizable.


9688 Thomas Fire Recovery

By 11/22/2018 the popular Casa de Maria retreat center was struggling to recover from our Montecito debris flow disaster, caused by a torrential January downpour on those bare slopes.


9668 La Casa de Maria 11/22/2018

Hiking the Tucker’s Grove trail later that day provided a welcome reminder of how our creeks usually look. San Antonio Creek was relatively untouched by the fires and floods of that year.  Just looking at this pic again now, of the lively boulder alongside it, triggered a deep nourishing breath of serenity.


9695 Silent Boulder Garnish



Scene From Above

Here are a few more aerial views, starting with the geometry of field and stream in the CA Salinas Valley.


5074 Nature & Nurture

The last pic I ever snapped from Tripp was of the Laguna Blanca area of Hope Ranch on a smoky and hazy day, that for me evokes the mist of memory.


5187 Era’s End

As weather finally began to hint at drought relief, from a safe distance we enjoyed the look of clouds beyond the Santa Ynez Mountains.


8976 Beyond the Divide

It’s nice having the long zoom lens of the Sony RX-10m4 for pix like these.


9421 Cachuma & Clouds

A few days later we enjoyed this somehow rakish view of Lake Cachuma.


9004 Angles & Reflections

Though it was from a Cachuma dam release to replenish ground water in the Santa Ynez Valley, it was nice to see a thin strip of green amid bone dry scrub.


9495 Thirsty Land



It’s surprising to me how much has happened since the last post here! So finally today a little time opened up to share more pix since the end of our last big Tripp trip to the Pacific Northwest and UK/EU airline adventures. We were deep in an epic drought back in July, with wildfires running amok and smoke hanging over our brown hills.


4804 Veiled Brown

People were enjoying our beaches though, like this one next to the marina.


4966 Shape of Water

August brought much more of the same.


5007 Watersports

Including wildfires that felt overwhelming despite the courage of firefighters rushing toward the dense smoke.


5115 Defender

August also sadly saw our last flight in beautiful Tripp. There’s a story in the performing arts about how to get the most from every show: make it for two people. The person seeing it for the first time, and the person seeing it for the last time. Though we hope to see many more flights in small planes in coming years, harvesting pix of familiar sights from that last Tripp flight is extra special now.


5128 Kelp Harvest

Hendry’s Beach (Arroyo Burro) evokes the relaxed mood in our zoom pix as we rode our magic carpet offshore that last time.


5140 Relaxing


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