08 May 2007


We took a little side jaunt down to the flower-farming town of Lompoc. Even though this is not considered the prime time of year to see the flower fields, I correctly figured they'd have at least something going on all the time (considering the growing-friendly climate of the area).

These will be transplanted and transported to nurseries and the like. It was kind of wierd to think that some-one's next house-plant might be from these carefully-cultivated fields....all that careful cultivation of flowers...those carefully cultivated....
cauli flowers? What is THAT doing among the posies?


Due to time constraints, we could not linger at ALL the interesting-looking places on our little trip, so we ended up finding some spots we'd like to go back to. Especially Morro Bay, where you can see a variety of birds. (The one above was actually photographed by Mr. Sunny at Point Lobos State Park.) I had no idea a map-dot like Morro Bay, with a ROCK like the Morro Rock, even existed, so, it was a nice surprise to discover it.
Another place that was surprisingly pretty was the drive between Visalia and the Sequoias. It starts out with tidy and attractive orchards, then you pass by Lake Kaweah, and finally the foothills. Even though we were probably there at possibly the only really pretty time of the year, I totally recommend seeing this area if the opportunity ever arrives. The best word to describe it is peaceful looking.

07 May 2007

DLiteful Surprises On The Road

It was a trip of sometimes stunning beauty with waterfalls,

pretty little coves like this one,
Coastal cyprus trees (who knew?),

and, surprisingly,
since this is not a "wildflower" year
(has to do with the timing of the rains),

we saw a fair amount of wild blooms.

Saw some cultivated ones too but that's for another post.

More of the trip

We also got over to the central coast of California where we saw sights worth writing home about. We were lucky to be there during the birthing season of the harbor seals. One pup was only 2 hours old. Mother and baby were in a protected cove where humans were not allowed too close, and rightly so, but it interfered with getting very clear photographs. Anyway, it was cute cute CUTE! The mom and baby kept touching noses. Guess she didn't think it was time for him to swim yet (or maybe she wasn't ready-at 2 hours postpartum) because she would put herself between him and the water. Sometimes when he got a little too rambunctious or tried to "wander" she'd pat him with her flipper thingy and he'd go where she directed. I couldn't understand why she wasn't feeding him but probably she knew what she was doing. Anyway, no choice but to let nature take its course.

05 May 2007

The land of BIG

The Sunny family (parents only, no kids this time) took a little road trip.

Even the sign is BIG

We managed to get this pic of Mr. Sunny before the fog rolled in too much. These big boys were not even overly large for the giant trees-about average.
These are the same two trees from a different angle. To get more of a perspective of the size, look to the bottom right corner of the photo. See that little pink head and shoulder? That's Sunny standing behind a trunk.

That is not a tree that Sunny is perched on in the next pic. As far as we can tell it is a fallen branch of the tree behind it. That monster tree is the "largest living thing". I presume that describes bulk or weight, since there are redwoods that are taller. Anyway, the diameter of the trunk is large enough to park a 35 foot motor home in-should anyone care to chisel it out for a garage. The largest branch is 8 feet across. The fence is to keep folks from getting too close. The root system is "shallow but strong", and I suppose they don't want them trampled on and possibly damaged. Wouldn't do to have the thing fall over. I was hoping the roots would remain VERY strong while we were there.

Yes, you actually can drive a car through a tree trunk. Note that the fog was getting worse and worse. Made for some treacherous driving on those winding mountain roads. It was also very cold up in those high elevations. We were over 7000 feet a good deal of the time. Compare the difference in how bundled up Sunny is sitting on the branch in the mountain peaks with the first picture taken at the entrance sign at the foothills where it was nice and comfortable.

We also went to King's Canyon where we saw more giants in the form of monoliths and mountains. But, it was impossible to get any pictures that gave any idea of the scale.
Too BIG!