Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Biking today

After a long day at the keyboard I hit the trail with the mountain bike.... at 5pm it was still nice and warm out there. I'd like to get out a little every day and pump up a hill or hike up a steep incline... we'll see if I can actually do that :-)
Just getting out there is so great ... what a joy
Here's what I saw

Don't let me have all the fun.... you get out there a little!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Painting in the rain

While plein air painting in Mt Shasta area we stopped at Lake Siskiyou one morning. The clouds were moving back and forth across the sky and an occassional sun spot would shine on or around the lake. Some very dark and ominous  clouds slowly made their way over the mountains ... finally we were painting in the rain. So who would ever think that painting in the rain would be fun... but, actually, it is. Who knows what interesting and exciting things await you today.

Sun Spot on Lake Siskiyou   oil on canvus board 9x12

Monday, September 27, 2010

Leaves are turning already

Sunday was such a beautiful day.... I took off for a bike ride ... could not resist .....The freeway is about 1/4 mile to the east .... I have never biked down there ... there is an entrance and parking lot to the Washoe State Park right there ... in times past I have seen wading birds there... and pelicans that flew over the Carson range from California to live with us over here ..... of course, there are always the ducks and geese that land in the lake and in the ponds in the golf course nearby. I figured this would be a good visit... it was.... however.....

Our leaves are turning yellow already ... I love Summer.. it just passed too quickly ... Fall is wonderful also.....  I can't wait to get out there and paint the Fall colors. If the Summer shot on by and you did not get out there and do some of the things you dreamed of .... make it happen in the Fall. Life seems to rush on by just like the seasons... be happy now... do some of the things you desire now ... whatever your season .... look for the good in whatever happens... seek happiness's good for your health.

When peddling to the top of the overpass this view appeared.... my, oh my... where is the water?! Look closely... there it is WAY out there... that is Washoe Lake ... it has been all the way over to the freeway from time to time in the past .... it was up to that little parking lot last Spring.

Now.... as we leave the parking lot heading east this is it... That is actually the Virginia Range there in the background...... it runs from the Truckee River to the Carson River and forms the Eastern border from Reno to Carson Valley...... the water of the great Washoe Lake is just out behind that clump or trees ... I saw squirrels and birds when I road out there...... well, Winter will be here in a few months and the water will rise to fill the lake once more... the cycle repeats and there is water for the farms ... food and nesting areas for the birds and critters (oh by the way... the bear has been back... I think he is trying to claim our ranch ... he is leaving deposits near my deck and out in the yard in several places ... I haven't caught him in the act... not that I wanted that view .... he gets up too early. We think he is camping in the willows at the east end of the meadow). Finally,as the leaves turn and Fall slips in I'm getting out there to enjoy the great out-of-doors.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Takin' a break

Sometimes paperwork just plain gets in the way of the important things ... like painting and hiking in the great out doors .... well, look who dropped in ..... so we took a break.. made a couple cheez burgers... had a cool one... then took off for the hills. It's always nice to take a break...especially when it seems there is no time for one. We took off up ito the High Sierras.... the are jsut in the back yard anyway... it's great. After driving part way up the trail,  we parked under a tree and headed upward on foot. There's nothing like a hike in the High Sierras to boost the spirits and fire up the energy capsule.
To help you project into the mood here are some shots ... let the imagination fly!

This may not look high but that light line near his elbow is Wahoe Lake... way down there! ... we are probably at  least at the 5500 ft elevation.

This is the top of the trail... someone bought the land and fenced it off... even put a gate with a lock ... well, it is the end of the day.. sun is setting ... so we will wait until the next time to go around the fence :-)

How can we not love the big tree country high in the hills... every turn of the trail is awesome.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Week end in Siskiyou County

About 4 hours up thru the High Sierras and Lassan National Forest is Mt Shasta, Mt Shasta City and Weed. I lodged in Weed.... it's not named for what you think... nor is it named for any wild flowers or grass that we consider weeds growing along the side of the road ....... it was named after Abner Weed ... the guy who discovered that the constant movement of air and winds in the area would speed the drying of his lumber so he established lumber mills in the area.
The current mayor and city council have voted against "weed" medical dispensaries even tho they are in or close to one of the largest growing areas ... they did not want their town associated with "weed".... heh... as if it isn't :-)

Hey .... that looks like Reno's old sign that said "Biggest Little City in the World"

Part of the old downtown... but then, the old downtown is the only downtown .... I think there is less than 3000 people in the town of Weed proper ..... great to be in a small community

That's how close Mt Shasta is... maybe about 5 miles .... this is a side street right off the main street

One of the friendly folks in downtown Mt Shasta City ... he took the next picture.

There I am in the old downtown Mt Shasta City... see those old buildings across the street... a local tells me that in times past Yreka was the big city in the area and Mt Shasta city was... well, the play ground.... those old building behind me were the central whore houses for the area ... now one of them is a Christian book store....heh, heh.

Well that's it for the tour of the Mt Shasta area towns.... the camera was acting up so I didn't get to take the normal 100's of fotos ... I felt lucky to even get these ..... maybe I have it working again now... we'll see.

Feodor Dostoyevsky says...   Wealth is the number of things one can do

Well I'm definitely working on keeping life simple and uncomplicated with lots of things … Doctor Schultz says get rid of 30% of everything you have every year …. others say..... do not buy anything unless you are getting rid of something at the same time
Makes sense to me.......  now :-)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Round Trip

Ahhhhh... a round trip to Mt Shasta and return the long way around. Had a great time. First thing when I get back is a little painting ... not even unpacked yet :-)
You'll have to watch for the next posting or 2 to see foto's and plein air paintings from the trip.
This plein air I did out back here.... a knife painting

Oil on canvas board with knife  6x8

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

View from Jim's back yard

I love having the mountains right out the back door... they are so big and awesome. Jim & Vickie left for a couple days to gauk at the wonders of the scenery up in Idaho.... he said it was a magnificent trip... while they were gone I fed the cat and the rooster.... it took the rooster 3 days to even begin to approach me even tho I was the food man ..Ha.... he's luck he didn't end up in the stew pot ... lucky for him he's a banty ... who the heck wants to spend all that time and trouble to prepare a banty for the stew pot?
Anyway, while I was feeding him I noticed the view from that part of the of the ranch was spectacular so I ran and got the paints.

oil on canvas board 11x14

Monday, September 13, 2010

Carson River Rocks

We don't always have this much water in the carson river in September but it's been a good year. Plein air painting is really great stuff ...... out doors, fresh air, sunshine and a picnic lunch .... what a way to spend all or part of a day.... and then to try to get somesort of impression and feeling on the canvas. Well if nothing else, they bring back fond memories of a day well spent.

oil 9x12 canvas pad

Paperwork has been cutting into my time ... there is a deadline coming up .. gotta go

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Flowers in my yard

I love those flowers in my yard
They all seem so happy
each time I pass
They shine their light
as they look to the sun
who can help not
appreciating such beauty

Monday, September 6, 2010

Trail to the Forest

While I do enjoy good fiction I have not engaged in such on this blog.... but I might one day......
this is the tale of the trail.... the trail into the forest at Davis Creek Park ...  there's the sign right by the road..... there really is a Davis Creek Park ... right up the road from me about 15 minutes on my bike. It is Sunday, and John and Heidi have invited me to go hiking with them so I did not ride my bike to the trail head... hey, I might need all that energy for the hike.... no telling what type of grueling episode these guys will put me thru.... they are experienced hikers.

This is actually the entryway and road into the campgrounds and park. There is overnight and group camping plus picnic grounds hiking trails and horse trails ... quite a beautiful park situated at the foot of the High Sierras

Just so you know how I got there and that I was really there ..... I will more than likely return on my bike and do some solo trips with my drawing and painting gear.

It;s not what you think ... and I'm not starting to climb the tree either... John was taking a shot  so I ducked out of the way when he called to me I poked my head around to see what he wanted... that's it ;-)

This is John as we head up the trail thru the sage ... I love the smell of the sage when we brush up against it

Not all of the trail is thru sage.... we finally arrived at the part where the big trees live ... there is nothing like hiking thru the big trees... the smells...the sounds ... the .... can it get any better than this .... dream away you guys that live in the city .... and then figure some way you can get to the big tree forests

This was actually the trailhead .... out of sequence but I'm sure you don't really care all that much :-)

One of the spectacular views thru the trees with long shadows of the afternoon ... the hike up into the mountain side was so refreshing and with the good company it was all the better ... the fresh clean air made me feel so much better even tho I felt fine to begin with.

There was even a lake ... I was very tempted to jump in but I restrained myself this time

Altho this may look like a trail it is really a crystal clear stream .... we hiked along it for a while taking in the fresh air and the babbling sound of water rushing over small rocks and an occasional little waterfall.

After climbing up the side of the mountain a little we made our way back down, passed the rangers residence and on to where our cars were parked.
It was a grand day for all so we made plans to take another hiking venture somewhere else before this beautiful summer ends.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

At the Carson River

Well, September is already here 
We think the end of Summer may be near
I still love that river running cold round the rock
Painting all day, n'er seeing the clock
This time I sat on a rock right next to the stream
The sound and the breeze stirred up quite a dream
Slathering paint and pushing with knife
and soon a small picture began taking life
heh.... this is it

9x12 oil on canvas board

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Today is plein air day in Carson Valley

While the weather is good I like to find any excuse to get out doors..... so today it's painting in the south end of Carson Vally.... on the California side. It's easy to get bogged down with all the things we think are so important and need to be done that we do not take the time to get outside very often ... oh yes, we run in and out between a building and the car on our way to another important errand or to the job .... but it's just not the same as wandering thru the woods... or across the desert.... or by the meandering stream ..... make a plan... or just drop everything and do it...... go out there and enjoy nature while you can.

oil on canvas board 8x10
Yeh, I know... you already saw this... but there are significan changes which may have improved it. Many times after a picture has digested for a while we can see things that could be improved ... and many times I go back and do it.

Friday, September 3, 2010

It's different in the morning

The world looks different in the morning ... and sometimes it is colored with the thought of that commute down the freeway to punch in for work for the day..... it may all seem a diffferent color if we are headed out with a fishing rod...... or hiking shoes and a picnic lunch ... or perched up on the skinny ass seat of a road bike :-)
The world is colored the way we want to look at it and the way we feel it.... so now
The air smells good today... refreshing the mind and body ... bringing health and life to us all ... ahhhh
another great day.

8x10 oil on canvas board
It's in the morning .... just out the door ... who could ask for anything more

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Going, going .....gone

Some times in life we just plain gather too much stuff... not necessarily for wrong reasons ... it just happens. In this case I had wheels at several locations... but then as locations got consolidated there were too many wheels. These wheels I had for nearly 10 years .. went camping in 'em.. drove to Oregon in 'em... made trips to the Bay Area and Sacto .... and lots of local trips .... fun and utility.
So it came to be that something had to go ... the old aerostar got the short straw and I sat 'er out by the mail box with a sign... and advertised on Craig's list. I must have priced those wheels wrong 'cus someone came and bought 'er up right away :-)

Sitting in her final resting place

I'll take it ... I love that van, says Bill

Paperwork completed and ther he goes.... all smiles

Last view as she heads down the old highway ..... Strange, I traded a good van for some funny green pieces of paper probabl;y worth nothing more than a good wipe :-)