Wild deer rooming the land in Spicewood, Texas. Deer
Stoney Point is a large rock formation in Chatsworth, California.  Once the home to the Tongva Indians. Stoney Point
This flower was shot on a undeveloped area in Spicewood, Texas Flower
An open space in Spicewood, Texas. Open Space
Electrical tower with nothing underneath it for miles. Electricity
Shot as the clouds were changing colors very rapidly. Hillside
Three rocks on one of the hiking trails in Tarzana. Three Rocks
10+ year old wall of ivy. Ivy
Bar in Austin, Texas. Mean-Eyed Cat Bar
Clouds after the rain has cleared. Clouds
Shot from the top of Reseda Blvd. The Valley
Chicken served right off the grill Chicken
BeBimBop cooking on the grill. BeBimBop
One tree split at birth, now growing back together as one. Tree Bark
Sundown on the mountain. Sundown Skiing
Outdoor sculpture. Zen
Monterey coastal walkway.                               Monterey
Aged bricks that have been in place for years. Bricks
Large nut & bolt welded into cement. Nut & Bolt
Home plate on an empty baseball field. Home Plate
Beautiful entrance to a property in Spicewood, Texas. Welcome
Sign attached to fence on baseball field. One
Basketball hoop at empty park. Hoops
1970's Skateboard with clay wheels. Old School
Moss growth on aging bricks. Brick & Moss
Leafless tree in the morning sunlight. Leafless
Moss growing through the bricks in the moist shade. Moss & Brick
My first skateboard clay wheels and all! First Skateboard
Entrance into King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas.  One of the most magical spaces in the Santa Monica Mountains. Entrance - King Gillette Ranch
Rolling hills of ranch land in Calabasas on Mullholand Highway. Rolling Hills - Calabasas
A purple sky takes ove a section of Mullholand Highway in Calabasas. Purple Sky - Mullholand Highway
Mud covered hillside in Calabasas. Mud Covered Hillside
Dark clouds hanging over the mountains in sections. Clouds + Sunlight
Clouds play a trick appearing to be green. Green Clouds
Front entrance and signage to King Gilette Ranch in Calabasas King Gillette Ranch
Open road on Mulholland Highway, Calabasas. Open Road
Victory Trailhead entrance at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve (formerly Ahmanson Ranch) . The huge parkland is part of a critical ecological linkage and wildlife corridor between the Santa Monica Mountains and the ranges to the north. Rolling hills studded with valley oaks, sycamore-lined canyon bottoms, miles of potential trails, and vistas of unspoiled California landscapes are now part of a parkland legacy. Diverse habitats and endangered species such as the California red-legged frog, the San Fernando Valley spineflower, and the Southwestern willow flycatcher are now permanently protected. The ranch encompasses headwaters of Malibu Creek which flows to Santa Monica Bay and supports one of the few populations of Southern steelhead trout. Historical reports indicate the fish may have traveled unimpeded upstream to streams on the Ahmanson Ranch.
Victory Trailhead
Trail at the Victory Trailhead at the western terminus of Victory Boulevard in West Hills, at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Trailhead at the northern end of Las Virgenes Canyon Road in Calabasas, and through trails headed east on the National Park Service land at Cheesebro Canyon. The trails are open to hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians during daylight hours. Trail
A road up in the hills on Old Calabasas Road. Old Calabasas Road
Old chair that has ben outside for many years. Old Chair
The reflection of light and shadows off the leaf. Leaf
A fence that looks better with age. Fence
Blooming Aloe Vera flower in the winter Aloe Vera - Flower
Wood and light creating a unique look. Wood + Light
A brown sconce on a brown wall. Sconce
Green rolling hills in Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve (formerly Ahmanson Ranch). Green Hills
Cloud covered sky in the morning, Tarzana Morning
The world famous Beverly Hill Hotel. Beverly Hills Hotel
Extreme light shinning through the Sepulveda Tunnel which was built in 1930. Light at the end of the tunnel
No dumping sign in the hills of Tarzana. No Dumping
Hillside next to a view of San Fernando Valley on the Mulholland Drive in the hills of Los Angeles. Hillside
Viewpoint of The Valley. The Hills
Water flowing in on the beach in Malibu. Water + Sand
Giant statue on the roof of La Salsa in Malibu. Classic towering fiberglass statue made in the 1960s to promote roadside businesses. "El Salsero" wears a Mexican hat and holds a taco platter. El Salsero
Established in 1920, the Malibu Inn was known as Malibu's chosen watering hole and host to Hollywood royalty including, Harold Lloyd and Gloria Swanson. In 1951, the Malibu Inn was moved eastward to its present location across from the Malibu pier on Pacific Coast Highway. Legendary singer-songwriter Neil Young owned the restaurant at one time and his musical influence transformed the Malibu Inn, combining its notoriety as a place for great food, with a live entertainment venue that featured some of music's most recognized performers including Eric Clapton, Tom Petty and Kid Rock. Malibu Inn
The beach on the south end of the Malibu pier. Malibu Beach
Lifeguard boat on the Malibu pier. Lifeguard Boat
Entrance column as you enter the Malibu Pier. Entrance Column
The northside of the Malibu Pier. Malibu Pier
Malibu pier extending into the ocean. Calm
Light and motion inside the tunnel on Malibu Canyon Road. The tunnel was built in 1952. The Pink Lady was a short-lived painting on a rock face near Malibu, California in 1966. The painting was created by Lynne Seemayer, a paralegal from Northridge, California, and depicted a 60-foot (18m) tall, nude woman in a running position. Light + Motion
Entrance to Malibu Canyon Tunnel that was built in 1952. Malibu Canyon Tunnel
If you look closely you can see where The Pink Lady once lived. The Pink Lady was a short-lived painting on a rock face near Malibu, California in 1966. The painting was created by Lynne Seemayer, a paralegal from Northridge, California, and depicted a 60-foot (18m) tall, nude woman in a running position. The Pink Lady
Houses on the Mailibu coast near the pier and Surfrider Beach. Malibu Beach Houses
A seagull on a rock in Malibu. Seagull
A brown seagull on a rock in Malibu. Brown Seagull
Endless hills of green. Shot on the  5 freeway in California. Endless
Rocks used as a barrier to keep the water from flooding Pacific Coast HIghway in Malibu. Rocks
Valley Oaks are the monarchs of California Oaks by virtue of their size, beauty and age. The largest trees have massive trunks, sometimes six or seven feet in diameter. The trees require plenty of water and nutrients and thrive in habitats with deep, rich soil like that found in alluvial valleys such as Santa Clarita. Trees of only 150 to 250 years in age may become massive with trunk diameters of three or four feet where there are optimal growing conditions. However where growth is slower Valley Oaks are able to reach ages of 400 to 600 years if they can resist the ravages of fire, and, drought and disease. These are the monarchs, steadfast lords of the countryside, governing the landscapes in which they reside. Valley Oak
Valley Oaks are the monarchs of California Oaks by virtue of their size, beauty and age. The largest trees have massive trunks, sometimes six or seven feet in diameter. The trees require plenty of water and nutrients and thrive in habitats with deep, rich soil like that found in alluvial valleys such as Santa Clarita. Trees of only 150 to 250 years in age may become massive with trunk diameters of three or four feet where there are optimal growing conditions. However where growth is slower Valley Oaks are able to reach ages of 400 to 600 years if they can resist the ravages of fire, and, drought and disease. These are the monarchs, steadfast lords of the countryside, governing the landscapes in which they reside. Valley Oak #2
Rolling hills on green and brown for miles. Valley Oaks are the monarchs of California Oaks by virtue of their size, beauty and age. The largest trees have massive trunks, sometimes six or seven feet in diameter. The trees require plenty of water and nutrients and thrive in habitats with deep, rich soil like that found in alluvial valleys such as Santa Clarita. Trees of only 150 to 250 years in age may become massive with trunk diameters of three or four feet where there are optimal growing conditions. However where growth is slower Valley Oaks are able to reach ages of 400 to 600 years if they can resist the ravages of fire, and, drought and disease. These are the monarchs, steadfast lords of the countryside, governing the landscapes in which they reside. Green Valley
Old granite that crumbling over time. Old Granite
Aloe Vera is a desert succulent plant prized both for its beauty and for its medicinal properties. Aloe will not bloom until it is fully mature, which happens at about four years of age.

Blooming
The landscape of the Santa Monica Mountains was not just created by geological forces, altered by weather, or covered by vegetation, but shaped by the people who lived and worked here.

People came to this area for many reasons. Initially, the Chumash and Tongva called the Santa Monica Mountains home. Then Spanish Explorers passed through these lands, followed by Rancheros and Homesteaders who worked the land they lived on. Still today, people work, travel, and recreate in the Santa Monica Mountains and call this place their home. Santa Monica Mountains
Entrance to one of the buildings at King Gillette Ranch. One of the most stunning locales in the Santa Monica Mountains, 588-acre King Gillette Ranch is situated in the heart of the Malibu Creek Watershed, by the confluence of five major tributaries, and adjacent to Malibu Creek State Park. This scenic parkland at the lower end of the Las Virgenes Valley is a haven for larger mammals of the Santa Monica Mountains. At the same time, it offers a rare unspoiled view of California’s rich archeological, cultural, and historic resources, including a Chumash settlement, and nationally significant structures designed for razor magnate King C. Gillette in the 1920’s by Wallace Neff, architect of California’s Golden Age. 
The broad meadows and low ridgelines serve as a wildlife movement corridor or hub in the geographic center of the Santa Monica Mountains range. Nine sensitive species are present. Raptors and other birds forage and nest among the plant communities of valley and coast live oak savannah, grassland, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, riparian woodland, and southern willow riparian vegetation. Park features include Gillette’s historic Spanish Colonial Revival style mansion and other structures that were part of the original landscape plan. These include a long eucalyptus alleé and grand entry, a large constructed pond, a formal courtyard and terrace, bridges, and lawns. 
A short, somewhat steep hike from the parking area leads to a knoll with 360-degree views—including the famous rock formations of Malibu Creek State Park. Other activities include strolling, bicycling, photography, and picnicking. Entrance
Shade in a row of trees at King gillette Ranch. One of the most stunning locales in the Santa Monica Mountains, 588-acre King Gillette Ranch is situated in the heart of the Malibu Creek Watershed, by the confluence of five major tributaries, and adjacent to Malibu Creek State Park. This scenic parkland at the lower end of the Las Virgenes Valley is a haven for larger mammals of the Santa Monica Mountains. At the same time, it offers a rare unspoiled view of California’s rich archeological, cultural, and historic resources, including a Chumash settlement, and nationally significant structures designed for razor magnate King C. Gillette in the 1920’s by Wallace Neff, architect of California’s Golden Age.
The broad meadows and low ridgelines serve as a wildlife movement corridor or hub in the geographic center of the Santa Monica Mountains range. Nine sensitive species are present. Raptors and other birds forage and nest among the plant communities of valley and coast live oak savannah, grassland, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, riparian woodland, and southern willow riparian vegetation. Park features include Gillette’s historic Spanish Colonial Revival style mansion and other structures that were part of the original landscape plan. These include a long eucalyptus alleé and grand entry, a large constructed pond, a formal courtyard and terrace, bridges, and lawns.
A short, somewhat steep hike from the parking area leads to a knoll with 360-degree views—including the famous rock formations of Malibu Creek State Park. Other activities include strolling, bicycling, photography, and picnicking. Shade
Shot at King Gillette Ranch. The landscape of the Santa Monica Mountains was not just created by geological forces, altered by weather, or covered by vegetation, but shaped by the people who lived and worked here.
People came to this area for many reasons. Initially, the Chumash and Tongva called the Santa Monica Mountains home. Then Spanish Explorers passed through these lands, followed by Rancheros and Homesteaders who worked the land they lived on. Still today, people work, travel, and recreate in the Santa Monica Mountains and call this place their home.
Santa Monica Mountains #2
An old Oak tree at King Gillette ranch. One of the most stunning locales in the Santa Monica Mountains, 588-acre King Gillette Ranch is situated in the heart of the Malibu Creek Watershed, by the confluence of five major tributaries, and adjacent to Malibu Creek State Park. This scenic parkland at the lower end of the Las Virgenes Valley is a haven for larger mammals of the Santa Monica Mountains. At the same time, it offers a rare unspoiled view of California’s rich archeological, cultural, and historic resources, including a Chumash settlement, and nationally significant structures designed for razor magnate King C. Gillette in the 1920’s by Wallace Neff, architect of California’s Golden Age. 
The broad meadows and low ridgelines serve as a wildlife movement corridor or hub in the geographic center of the Santa Monica Mountains range. Nine sensitive species are present. Raptors and other birds forage and nest among the plant communities of valley and coast live oak savannah, grassland, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, riparian woodland, and southern willow riparian vegetation. Park features include Gillette’s historic Spanish Colonial Revival style mansion and other structures that were part of the original landscape plan. These include a long eucalyptus alleé and grand entry, a large constructed pond, a formal courtyard and terrace, bridges, and lawns. 
A short, somewhat steep hike from the parking area leads to a knoll with 360-degree views—including the famous rock formations of Malibu Creek State Park. Other activities include strolling, bicycling, photography, and picnicking. Old Oak
Shot from a mountain on the King Gillette Ranch. One of the most stunning locales in the Santa Monica Mountains, 588-acre King Gillette Ranch is situated in the heart of the Malibu Creek Watershed, by the confluence of five major tributaries, and adjacent to Malibu Creek State Park. This scenic parkland at the lower end of the Las Virgenes Valley is a haven for larger mammals of the Santa Monica Mountains. At the same time, it offers a rare unspoiled view of California’s rich archeological, cultural, and historic resources, including a Chumash settlement, and nationally significant structures designed for razor magnate King C. Gillette in the 1920’s by Wallace Neff, architect of California’s Golden Age. 
The broad meadows and low ridgelines serve as a wildlife movement corridor or hub in the geographic center of the Santa Monica Mountains range. Nine sensitive species are present. Raptors and other birds forage and nest among the plant communities of valley and coast live oak savannah, grassland, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, riparian woodland, and southern willow riparian vegetation. Park features include Gillette’s historic Spanish Colonial Revival style mansion and other structures that were part of the original landscape plan. These include a long eucalyptus alleé and grand entry, a large constructed pond, a formal courtyard and terrace, bridges, and lawns. 
A short, somewhat steep hike from the parking area leads to a knoll with 360-degree views—including the famous rock formations of Malibu Creek State Park. Other activities include strolling, bicycling, photography, and picnicking. Down Below
The present-day wildlife reserve is a product of several phases of development. The first effort in 1979 established the 48-acre riparian area south of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and The Los Angeles River. Formal establishment of the 60-acre habitat north of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and Haskell Creek in 1988 involved grading for the wildlife lake and extensive plantings of native annuals, shrubs, and trees. Pathways were created for educational and enjoyment purposes. The lake became filled with reclaimed water from the nearby Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in 1992.

The latest and most extensive addition to the area is the 1998 expansion project funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers adding an educational staging area and amphitheatre, various pathway/signage/viewing area improvements, new pedestrian bridges over and a reconfiguration and revegetation of Haskell Creek, additional native plantings, and the formal inclusion of 60 additional acres west of Haskell Creek to Woodley Ave.

The resulting 225-acre Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve today is one of the finest refuges of its kind within a major urban area in the country. It serves not only as a restored natural habitat for wildlife but as a living laboratory for all to enjoy. Los Angeles River
The present-day wildlife reserve is a product of several phases of development. The first effort in 1979 established the 48-acre riparian area south of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and The Los Angeles River. Formal establishment of the 60-acre habitat north of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and Haskell Creek in 1988 involved grading for the wildlife lake and extensive plantings of native annuals, shrubs, and trees. Pathways were created for educational and enjoyment purposes. The lake became filled with reclaimed water from the nearby Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in 1992.
The latest and most extensive addition to the area is the 1998 expansion project funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers adding an educational staging area and amphitheatre, various pathway/signage/viewing area improvements, new pedestrian bridges over and a reconfiguration and revegetation of Haskell Creek, additional native plantings, and the formal inclusion of 60 additional acres west of Haskell Creek to Woodley Ave.

The resulting 225-acre Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve today is one of the finest refuges of its kind within a major urban area in the country. It serves not only as a restored natural habitat for wildlife but as a living laboratory for all to enjoy. Bridge
The present-day wildlife reserve is a product of several phases of development. The first effort in 1979 established the 48-acre riparian area south of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and The Los Angeles River. Formal establishment of the 60-acre habitat north of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and Haskell Creek in 1988 involved grading for the wildlife lake and extensive plantings of native annuals, shrubs, and trees. Pathways were created for educational and enjoyment purposes. The lake became filled with reclaimed water from the nearby Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in 1992.
The latest and most extensive addition to the area is the 1998 expansion project funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers adding an educational staging area and amphitheatre, various pathway/signage/viewing area improvements, new pedestrian bridges over and a reconfiguration and revegetation of Haskell Creek, additional native plantings, and the formal inclusion of 60 additional acres west of Haskell Creek to Woodley Ave.

The resulting 225-acre Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve today is one of the finest refuges of its kind within a major urban area in the country. It serves not only as a restored natural habitat for wildlife but as a living laboratory for all to enjoy. Wild Shrub
The sun and the natural color of the plants creates a rainbow effect on the pathway.

The present-day wildlife reserve is a product of several phases of development. The first effort in 1979 established the 48-acre riparian area south of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and The Los Angeles River. Formal establishment of the 60-acre habitat north of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and Haskell Creek in 1988 involved grading for the wildlife lake and extensive plantings of native annuals, shrubs, and trees. Pathways were created for educational and enjoyment purposes. The lake became filled with reclaimed water from the nearby Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in 1992.
The latest and most extensive addition to the area is the 1998 expansion project funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers adding an educational staging area and amphitheatre, various pathway/signage/viewing area improvements, new pedestrian bridges over and a reconfiguration and revegetation of Haskell Creek, additional native plantings, and the formal inclusion of 60 additional acres west of Haskell Creek to Woodley Ave.

The resulting 225-acre Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve today is one of the finest refuges of its kind within a major urban area in the country. It serves not only as a restored natural habitat for wildlife but as a living laboratory for all to enjoy.

Rainbow Path
The present-day wildlife reserve is a product of several phases of development. The first effort in 1979 established the 48-acre riparian area south of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and The Los Angeles River. Formal establishment of the 60-acre habitat north of Burbank Blvd. between the dam and Haskell Creek in 1988 involved grading for the wildlife lake and extensive plantings of native annuals, shrubs, and trees. Pathways were created for educational and enjoyment purposes. The lake became filled with reclaimed water from the nearby Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in 1992.
The latest and most extensive addition to the area is the 1998 expansion project funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers adding an educational staging area and amphitheatre, various pathway/signage/viewing area improvements, new pedestrian bridges over and a reconfiguration and revegetation of Haskell Creek, additional native plantings, and the formal inclusion of 60 additional acres west of Haskell Creek to Woodley Ave.

The resulting 225-acre Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve today is one of the finest refuges of its kind within a major urban area in the country. It serves not only as a restored natural habitat for wildlife but as a living laboratory for all to enjoy.
Shadow + Bridge
27,000 feet in the air between Burbank and Las Vegas. 27,000
The suburban sprawl flying into Las Vegas. Suburbia
A rock in Austin, Texas with BLT spray painted on it. BLT
i love you so much, spray painted on the side of a building in Austin, Texas i love you so much
Bridge structure, one of the pillars holding up a bridge in Austin, Texas. Bridge
A bridge in Austin, Texas that crosses the river heading into downtown. Austin Bridge
Broken down building with a carved NO PARKING warning in the paint. NO PARKING
Downtown Austin shot from across the river. Downtown Austin
Private property located on the East Side od Austin, Texas. Private Property
Blue water meter found on the ground in Austin, Texas. City of Austin Texas
Kubota mudder just waiting to be put to work. Kubota
A thin tree with great width on a farm in Morgan Hill, California. Thin Tree
Steps leading to darkness on a path with perfect squares. Step into Darkness
One of the many farms in Morgan Hill, California.  This one is a mushroom farm. Mushroom Farm
Lettuce Farm in Morgan Hill, California. Lettuce Farm
5912 is a number. 5912
The Jackalope is Austin's most notorious old school "dive bar". Velvet paintings, a huge padded bar, great drinks, and a widely diverse crowd are it's trademarks.
http://jackalopebar.com/about.htm
The Jackalope
Located in the cliffs and canyons of the Santa Monica Mountains, Topanga State Park features 36 miles of trails through open grassland, live oaks and spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. 

The park is located entirely within the Los Angeles city limits and is considered the world’s largest wildland within the boundaries of a major city.  Excellent recreational opportunities for hikers as well as mountain bikers (restricted to fire roads) and equestrians. 

The park is bound on the south by Pacific Palisades and Brentwood, on the west by Topanga Canyon, and on the east by Rustic Canyon. Numerous geologic formations can be found in the park, including earthquake faults, marine fossils, volcanic intrusions, and a wide variety of sedimentary formations.

Location/Directions
A good place to start a visit to Topanga State Park is Trippet Ranch, once a "gentleman's ranch" for a weekend getaway from the city. 

From Pacific Coast Highway, travel north on Topanga Canyon Boulevard, pass the post office at the center of "town," then turn right on Entrada Road. 

Keep to the left at every opportunity until you reach the park's main parking lot (about one mile). From the Ventura Freeway (101), exit at Topanga Canyon Boulevard, drive south over the crest of the mountains and proceed three miles to Entrada Road and turn left.

Park Trails 
Many of the park's trails can be accessed from Trippet Ranch. The Musch Trail leads north to Musch Trail Camp by winding in and out of the sun and shade where plant assemblages change with every subtle difference in light and moisture. 

Two miles from Trippet is Eagle Junction, where hikers encounter the Eagle Spring loop trail. Eagle Rock, one of the many boulder outcrops on the trail, looms over the terrain and provides panoramic views of the park. At the eastern end of the Eagle Spring loop, hikers will come to the Hub Junction and the Temescal Fire Road. 

Going north, hikers travel through chaparral to unpaved Mulholland Drive, which traverses the park. South on Temescal Fire Road takes hikers high above the wild canyons with sycamore and oak riparian forests below. At Rogers Junction, hikers can opt for the Backbone Trail, a trail that winds through the Santa Monica Mountains from Will Rogers State Historic park in the east to Point Mugu State Park in the west. Rustic Canyon can be seen from the Backbone Trail. 

Another option from Trippet Ranch is to walk east to the Topanga Fire Road and then north for a short distance to the Santa Inez Trail. Descending into the Santa Inez Canyon, hikers can see crumbly sandstone formations containing pockets where moisture can collect, supporting numerous small plants that form tiny cliff gardens. Close to the bottom of the trail is a side trail leading to a lovely waterfall. Topanga Canyon
A gorilla thinking about what to do with a tree branch. Thinking
Amtrak railroad track in Summerland, California. Railroad Track
Amtrak train rushing by in Summerland, California. Motion
A penguin sunbathing. Penguin
Good luck budda. Rub my belly
Early morning in Summerland, California. Dawn Patrol
A giraffe enjoying the sunshine in Santa Barbara. Giraffe
A very tired parrot enjoying the sun in Santa Barbara. Parrot
A early morning in Summerland. California at a railroad crossing . Railroad Crossing
Wild flowers on Caballero Canyon Trail in Tarzana, California. Wild Flowers
A Mallard Duck enjoying the Spring Break, Caifornia weather on a fantastic day Duck in the pool
A lizard hiding out on a tree. In late 2003, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy completed the long-awaited purchase of the 2,983-acre Ahmanson Ranch, a stunningly beautiful property in the Simi Hills in Ventura County nestled at the western edge of the San Fernando Valley. The new parkland is contiguous with and accessed from the existing 2,650-acre Upper Las Virgenes Open Space Park.
The huge parkland is part of a critical ecological linkage and wildlife corridor between the Santa Monica Mountains and the ranges to the north. Rolling hills studded with valley oaks, sycamore-lined canyon bottoms, miles of potential trails, and vistas of unspoiled California landscapes are now part of a parkland legacy. Diverse habitats and endangered species such as the California red-legged frog, the San Fernando Valley spineflower, and the Southwestern willow flycatcher are now permanently protected. The ranch encompasses headwaters of Malibu Creek which flows to Santa Monica Bay and supports one of the few populations of Southern steelhead trout. Historical reports indicate the fish may have traveled unimpeded upstream to streams on the Ahmanson Ranch.
Access to the park is at the Victory Trailhead at the western terminus of Victory Boulevard in West Hills, at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Trailhead at the northern end of Las Virgenes Canyon Road in Calabasas, and through trails headed east on the National Park Service land at Cheesebro Canyon. The trails are open to hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians during daylight hours. No unauthorized motorized vehicles are allowed. Camouflaged
A natural wall that was formed over time at the Upper Las Virgenes Open Space Park (2,650-acres) in West Hills, California. In late 2003, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy completed the long-awaited purchase of the 2,983-acre Ahmanson Ranch, a stunningly beautiful property in the Simi Hills in Ventura County nestled at the western edge of the San Fernando Valley. The new parkland is contiguous with and accessed from the existing 2,650-acre Upper Las Virgenes Open Space Park. 
The huge parkland is part of a critical ecological linkage and wildlife corridor between the Santa Monica Mountains and the ranges to the north. Rolling hills studded with valley oaks, sycamore-lined canyon bottoms, miles of potential trails, and vistas of unspoiled California landscapes are now part of a parkland legacy. Diverse habitats and endangered species such as the California red-legged frog, the San Fernando Valley spineflower, and the Southwestern willow flycatcher are now permanently protected. The ranch encompasses headwaters of Malibu Creek which flows to Santa Monica Bay and supports one of the few populations of Southern steelhead trout. Historical reports indicate the fish may have traveled unimpeded upstream to streams on the Ahmanson Ranch. 
Access to the park is at the Victory Trailhead at the western terminus of Victory Boulevard in West Hills, at the Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Trailhead at the northern end of Las Virgenes Canyon Road in Calabasas, and through trails headed east on the National Park Service land at Cheesebro Canyon. The trails are open to hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians during daylight hours. No unauthorized motorized vehicles are allowed.
Not man made #1
A formation of rocks that have stood the test of time. Not man made #2
This mountain that is full of cracks, caverns and rock-filled cliffs.  It also has a X at the bottom of the mountain. Mountain X
The Sepulveda Tunnel
Under Mulholland Drive
in Los Angeles

The Sepulveda Tunnel runs underneath Mulholland Drive and connects the San Fernando Valley with the west side of Los Angeles.  Two lanes run north, one runs south.  It was opened in 1930.  The tunnel facade contains elements of Greek and Roman architecture.  Inside, the tunnel is lined with tiles and has a tiny sidewalk.  Tunnel Vision
Pink flowers photographed on Easter. Pink Flowers
Purple flowers photographed on Easter. Purple Flowers
Red flowers photographed on Easter. Red Flowers
A nice walk in the sprinkler's on a warm Spring Break day! Sprinkler Walk
Two lizards hugging on a driveway. Refusing to move at any cost. Lizard Love
Classic Jaguar in beautiful shape! Classic
Metal sculptures next to a red building in North Hollywood, California. Metal + Red
Glass ceiling inside a large mall that will no doubt change over time. Glass Ceiling
The station opened in May 1939 as the Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal, replacing the older La Grande Station and Central Station. One of a number of union stations built in the early 1900s it served trains from the Union Pacific, Santa Fe and Southern Pacific Railways. Built on a grand scale, Union Station became known as "Last of the Great Railway Stations" built in the United States. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980. Union Station- Los Angeles
Los Angeles City Hall, completed 1928, is the center of the government of the city of Los Angeles, California, and houses the mayor's office and the meeting chambers and offices of the Los Angeles City Council. It is located in the Civic Center district of downtown Los Angeles in the city block bounded by Main, Temple, First, and Spring streets. City Hall - Los Angeles
Chandelier inside Union Station in Los Angeles. Chandelier
Torchy's Tacos in Austin, Texas.  Absolutely the best tacos on the planet!  http://www.torchystacos.com/ Damn Good Tacos!
Stoney Point is a large rock formation in Chatsworth, California. Once the home to the Tongva Indians.  It's also a great place for rock climbing. Stoney Point #2
One of the coolest cars at the 2013 El Segundo Car Show. Badass Woody!
This Dodge Fury is a gem!  One of the cars at the 2013 El Segundo Car Show.  A muscle car to admire. Dodge Fury
A early American street rod.  Will the boy jump in and take it for ride? Ain't no child's play!
Enjoying a sunset in San Clemente, California. Sundown in San Clemente
NBC Universal building in Universal City. Corporate Skyline
Hanging out on the beach in San Clemente, California. No More Surf
Another beauty at the El Segundo car show. Blue Chrome
The sirens were tested in unison at 10 a.m. on the last Friday of every month. In the 1950s and early '60s, neighborhoods were clustered in pockets across the Valley-each within earshot of sirens typically placed atop tall fire stations or attached to 30-foot steel poles.

When the siren was bolted to the top of a 15-foot tower on the roof of a city fire station near Coldwater Canyon Avenue and Ventura Boulevard in the early 1950s, residents were warned of the monthly tests so they wouldn't panic, she said.

Trees also partially screen a siren from nearby homes on Parthenia Street in Winnetka. In Encino, a 30-foot-tall siren is hidden among high-rise office buildings that have sprung up in recent years at Gloria Avenue and Ventura Boulevard. Air Rade Siren in Reseda
Another beautiful car from the El Segundo car show. Orange Flames
A 1964 car that has been turned into a racing machine.  One of the many great cars at the El Segundo Car Show. 1964 Beast
An unbloomed Aloe Vera flower waiting to open up. Unbloomed
Text Telephone in California Adventures / Disneyland. Text Telephone
This photo was shot from the Santa Monica Mountains capturing the San Fernando Valley on a cold, dark and cloudy day. Valley of Clouds
The Living Roof: The more typical black tar-and-asphalt building rooftop leads to a phenomenon called the “Urban Heat Island” effect. The endless swath of black rooftops and pavement trap heat, causing cities to be 6 to 10 degrees warmer than outlying greenbelt areas. One-sixth of all electricity consumed in the U.S. goes to cool buildings. The Academy's green rooftop keeps the building's interior an average of 10 degrees cooler than a standard roof would. The plants also transform carbon dioxide into oxygen, capture rainwater, and reduce energy needs for heating and cooling. The Living Roof
A vintage Falcon Flex camera that has been in our family for generations.  The camera is a Graf Achromat, reflex camera with an aluminum case. It even has the original box! 50mm Falcon Flex Camera
A roof top after a winter rain in Tarzana, California. Roof
Never ending computer cords! Wired
One of the many old brick buildings still standing in Olvera Street area in Los Angeles.

Olvera Street is in the oldest part of Downtown Los Angeles, California, and is part of the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Monument. Historically, it abutted the original Chinatown, which was later removed to its modern location to make way for Union Station. There are 27 buildings of various ages still standing on Olvera Street, including the Avila Adobe, the Pelanconi House, and the Sepulveda House. Old Brick Building
The side of a historical building in Los angeles off Spring Street in the downtown area. There are more than 120 Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monuments (HCMs) in the Downtown Los Angeles area. These include the Old Plaza Historic District, Little Tokyo, Chinatown, the Broadway Theater District, the Spring Street Financial District, and the Fashion District. L.A. Downtown Building
This is the original ticket booth in Los Angeles Union Station. 

Los Angeles Union Station (or LAUS) is the main railway station in Los Angeles, California. It is the largest railroad passenger terminal in the Western United States.

The station opened in May 1939 as the Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal, replacing the older La Grande Station and Central Station. One of a number of union stations built in the early 1900s it served trains from the Union Pacific, Santa Fe and Southern Pacific Railways. Built on a grand scale, Union Station became known as "Last of the Great Railway Stations" built in the United States. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980. L.A. Union Station - Original Ticket Booth
The Malibu Pier was originally built in 1905 to support the operations of Frederick Hastings Rindge's Malibu Rancho. Hides, grains, fruit, and other agricultural products were shipped from the pier either directly or by transfer to larger vessels. Building materials and other Rancho necessities arrived at the pier. The Rindge private railroad, used for freight movement within the ranch, had a terminus near the pier.

The Adamson House, located just west of the pier, included a wall built along the highway to the pier in 1932. The entrance tower and storage room, at the entrance the pier, is decorated with Malibu Potteries tile from the factory which was located just east of the pier. The tower and part of the wall are still there.

In 1934, the pier was opened to the public for pier and charter fishing. Fishermen were also shuttled back and forth from the pier and the barge Minnie A. Caine anchored a mile off shore. After the bankruptcy of Marblehead Land Co. (the Rindge's land operation) in 1936, the Malibu Pier was taken over by bondholders who had helped finance Malibu development. The pier was extended to its current 780-foot length, and the first small bait and tackle shop building was constructed at the ocean end by 1938.

During World War II, the end of the pier served as a U.S. Coast Guard daylight lookout station until an intense storm in the winter of 1943-1944. The end of the pier, including the bait and tackle shop, was destroyed and had to be rebuilt. The remains of the pier were sold to William Huber's Malibu Pier Company for $50,000 with the proviso that he would construct a building for the Coast Guard to re-occupy. After the end of the war, Huber expanded the pier and built the familiar twin buildings at the end for a bait and tackle shop plus a restaurant.

In 1960, an artificial reef was constructed in the ocean about one mile southeast of the pier in an attempt to protect it from ocean damage. The reef was composed of concrete pilings, derelict streetcars and other heavy materials.

Sports fishing boats operated from the Pier until the early 1960s. The building near the land end of the pier (intended for the Coast Guard) became the Malibu Sports Club Restaurant in 1966, then the Malibu Pier Club after a change of owners, and then Alice's Restaurant (yes, named for the song) from 1972 to the closure of the pier in the 1990s.

On February 10, 1980 a real estate auction was held in Malibu and the star property offered was the Malibu Pier, the first time Bill Huber put it up for sale. Bids of $3 million and $3.1 million were received but Huber did not sell at that time. Later that year, the State of California did buy the pier, in somewhat battered condition. The pier continued to operate under the State Department of Parks and Recreation, that leased space to the commercial operations on the pier. 

In 1985, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to recommend the pier for registration as a Point of Historical Interest.  The historic pier was heavily damaged in the El Niño storms in 1993 and another storm severely damaged it again in 1995. It was declared unsafe and the State closed it to the public. In 1997, California transferred the pier to the City of Malibu with the proviso that Malibu fix and maintain it, something the City did not have the funds to do. The pier reverted to the State. Malibu Pier
Gilroy is well known for its garlic crop and for the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, featuring various garlicky foods, including garlic ice cream. Gilroy also produces mushrooms in considerable quantity. Gilroy's nickname is "Garlic Capital of the World," although Gilroy does not lead the world in garlic production. Boutique wine production is a large part of Gilroy's western portion, mostly consisting of older family estates around the Mount Madonna County Park mountain bases. Gilroy - Farmland
Blueprints from the office of Florez Engineering in San Diego, California. www.florezengineering.com Blueprints
An empty Strawberry stand on the side of the road in Morgan Hill. California. Fresh Strawberries
On the road traveling to Northern California on the Grapevine, which is a section of the 5 Freeway.

The Grapevine was infamous for its high accident rate before the road was straightened and widened. There are escape ramps branching off both sides of the downward part of the road for heavy trucks whose brakes fail on this very long, 6% steep and now straight grade. The road is still occasionally closed due to heavy snowfall during winter storms. It has also been closed for fire. As the Grapevine is the major route between Northern and Southern California, any closure is a major disruption to traffic along the West Coast. On The Road
Nestled in the grassy hills of the western San Joaquin Valley near historic Pacheco Pass, San Luis Reservoir State Recreation Area is noted for boating, board sailing, camping, and picnicking. But it’s anglers who find the unit’s three lakes most inviting.

The area around San Luis Reservoir and O'Neill Forebay is often very windy, and winds can come up quite suddenly. Watch the wind warning lights at the Basalt entrance station, Quien Sabe Point, and Romero Visitor Center. On the forebay, wind warning lights are located at the Medeiros boat ramp and above the South Beach picnic area at San Luis Creek. 

Climate/recommended clothing: Summer temperatures here average in the mid-90s and occasionally exceed 100° but evenings are usually cool and pleasant. Rainfall averages eight to nine inches a year, mostly between November and April. In winter, temperatures seldom go below freezing, and tule fogs are frequent. In the spring, the golden-brown hills are coated with a fleeting green, highlighted by bursts of wildflowers colors. The Valley Below
One of the Aloe Vera plants that is so photographic that I have to keep shooting it over and over. Octopus Aloe Vera
Sundown at the pier at Ocean Beach in San Diego, California. Sundown in Ocean Beach
A USA flag on the exterior of oil refinery in Long Beach, California off the 405 freeway.  

Watching the smog out of this refinery doesn't make me feel too patriotic though. Patriotic Smog
An illuminating  "Drink Pepsi" billboard glowing as the sun goes down in Long Beach, California.  This photo was captured while being driven on the 405 freeway. Drink Pepsi
The sun going down in Long Beach, California as it lights up the sky, while being driven on the 405 freeway. Sundown in Long Beach
Sunrise in Woodland Hills, California. Big Blue Sky
A warning sign at Pierce College in Woodland Hills, California. Do not feed horses
One of the front walls of The Spice Table restaurant in downtown Los Angeles that is now closed. http://www.thespicetable.com/2014/01/14/death-by-train-the-spice-tables-last-supper/ 114
Random pipes on the side of a building, on one of the hundreds of mini-malls in the San Fernando Valley. Pipes
Two Aloe Vera flowers growing side by sde Two
Located in the heart of the eastern Santa Monica Mountains above an unpaved portion of Mulholland Drive 2.7 miles west of the 405 freeway, 10.2-acre San Vicente Mountain Park offers the visitor stunning 360-degree views, access to a large network of hiking, mountain biking, and equestrian trails, and picnic areas. Marvin Braude Mulholland Gateway Park, Westridge Canyonback Park, and the 20,000-acre “Big Wild” wilderness area, are all accessible from San Vicente Mountain Park.
The park also provides a glimpse into United States military history. Numerous self-guided interpretive displays explain how from 1956-1968, San Vicente Mountain was one of sixteen Los Angeles area Nike-Ajax supersonic anti-aircraft missile launch sites. During the Cold War, Nike sites were located in defensive rings surrounding key urban and industrial areas throughout the United States. This site contained ground-based radar and computer systems designed to detect and track hostile aircraft, and to guide the anti-aircraft missiles that would be launched from nearby Sepulveda Basin to their targets.
The original radar tower now provides visitors with spectacular views of the Santa Monica Mountains, the Encino Reservoir and San Fernando Valley, and the Los Angeles Basin. It is one of the region’s premiere locations to watch a Western sunset. Metal Stairs
A barb wire fence high up in the Santa Monica Monica Mountains. Views of the the valley in the distance. Barb Wire
The 405 freeway at rush hour as traffic is building up. 405 Freeway
After working as a government trapper in the American northwest for 20 years, John Ehn moved with his family to Burbank, California, in 1941. He built a home there, which evolved into a motel he named the Old Trapper’s Lodge. The lobby was filled with weapons, animal pelts, and memorabilia gathered during his days as a trapper. Proud of his pioneer heritage, he proceeded to decorate the grounds of the motel with a series of life-size concrete statues enacting the Gold Rush and encounters with Native American tribes in the Old West. Subjects included fight scenes between mountain men and Indians, dance hall girls, family groups, and a cemetery, complete with inscribed tombstones.

Upon the demise of the motel in 1980, the large statues were transported and installed on the campus of nearby Pierce College. However, while the sculptures were welcomed, funds for their conservation and maintenance were not available until an anonymous group of supporters repaired and repainted the sculptures and continue to do so. The installation was declared a California Historical Landmark in 1985. Several of the smaller sculptures were distributed to museums by Seymour Rosen, a folk-art site-preservation activist and founder of Saving and Preserving Arts and Cultural Environments (SPACES), which continues to advocate for the preservation of folk art environments. John Ehn
A restaurant employee playing around at Myung Dong Tofu Cabin in San Mateo, California.  This place has some of the best Korean Food in Northern California!
http://www.tofucabin.com/ Have some candy!
A few of the many large rocks in the Painted Cave area in the mountains of Santa Barbara, California. The Chumash indians were the original settlers in the area dating back to the 1600's. Not man made #3
Built in 1929 this log cabin is a piece of Santa Barbara history.  This cabin was built in the Painted Cave area, which was inhabited by the Chumach Indians, one of California's largest tribes.
http://www.santaynezchumash.org/history.html 1929 Santa Barbara Log Cabin
Cement Circles on the side of a building in Tarzana that was built in the 1960's Cement Circles
The back of The Red Barn in Tarzana, California. Barn
Toxic waste dripping out the side of a building. Toxic Waste
This is a recycle logo cast into cement on the side of a trash can.  Please recycle!

http://recycle.com/ Recycle
A hand painted sign on the side of the road in Gilroy, California.  Gilroy is well known for its garlic crop and for the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, featuring various garlicky foods, including garlic ice cream. Fresh & Pickled Garlic
One if the old farms that is sill standing in Gilroy, California. Gilroy - Old Farm
An abandoned house in Gilroy, California on the side of the 152 Freeway in Garlic county! Abandoned
Roadside pricing for several products in Gilroy, California. Roadside Pricing
One of the many factories that creates food for the world. Some people might say it's manufactured food. 

You decide.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetically_modified_food Food Factory
A house being rebuilt in Santa Barbara, California. Rebuild
A beautiful window without glass that overlooks all of Santa Barbara, California. Air Window
The solar powered ferris wheel at Pacific Park in Santa Monica, California.
http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/pacific-park-ferris-wheel Solar Powered Ferris Wheel
A beautiful day on the Newport Beach Bay in California. Newport Bay
Stacks of clay pots that were found on the a property in Santa Barbara, California. Pottery
A tree that is 100+ years old in the mountains of Santa Barbara,, California. Tree of Life
An obsolete Federal Pacific Noark electrical panel that is currently attached to a non operational house in the mountains of Santa Barbara. Electric Panel
The Cold Spring Canyon Arch Bridge in the Santa Ynez Mountains links Santa Barbara, California with Santa Ynez, California. The bridge is signed as part of State Route 154. The current bridge was completed and opened to traffic in 1963 and won awards for engineering, design and beauty. Cold Spring Canyon Arch Bridge
Graffiti painted on the side of a building in downtown, Los Angeles on 7th Street. Street Art
Street art painted on the side of a building in Downtown, Los Angeles. The Fight
This is an old factory building in Downtown, Los Angeles. Downtown Factory
Part of the cement signage for a Engine Company (fire station) in Downtown, Los Angeles. Engine
Shot inside a loft in Downtown, Los Angeles. Monkey Music
Bees painted on the top of a building in Downtown, Los Angeles. Bees
A very inconspicuous bar on 7th Street in Downtown, Los Angeles. Bar
David-Harvey Inc. appears to be a business of the past.  The building is located in Downtown, Los Angeles. David-Harvey Inc.
Several of the industrial buildings in Downtown, Los Angeles that have been converted to live / work lofts. Loft 726
Looking towards the window on a rainy day inside a Downtown loft in Los Angeles. Loft
Three buildings in a developing area of Downtown, Los Angeles. Three Buildings
In December 1926, Sears, Roebuck & Company of Chicago announced that it would build a nine-story, height-limit building on East Ninth Street (later renamed Olympic Boulevard) at Soto Boulevard to be the mail-order distribution center for the Rocky Mountain and Pacific Coast states, to be constructed by Scofield Engineering Company. Architectural work was handled by George Nimmens Company. The building was erected in six months, using materials that were all made in Los Angeles County, with the exception of the steel window sashes. To accomplish the feat, the contractor had six steam shovels and a large labor force working night and day shifts. It was reported that rock and sand for the cement work were being delivered to the site at the rate of twenty carloads daily. When the building was completed in late June 1927, Sears Building
A building in the Downtown, Los Angeles area that had updated with metal on the front. metal+brick
A green painted building in Downtown, Los Angeles with gold trimming. Green+Gold
Open windows inside a loft in Downtown, Los Angeles on a rainy day. Windows Open
Sundown in Tarzana, California as the sky lights up. Electric Skyline
Just another day in Downtown, Los Angeles. Just Another Day
The One Wilshire Building stands out in this shot of Downtown, Los Angeles on a rainy day. One Wilshire
One of the many vineyards in Northern California. This Gilroy vineyard is located off the 152 freeway. Vineyard
A popular fruit stand in Gilroy, California. Fruits
The Old Gilroy Service Station that is no longer in business. Off the 152 freeway in Gilroy, California. Old Gilroy Service Station
A ranch property in Gilroy, California with rolling hills in the background. Fences
An ominous shadow of an oil rig in the background of this shot taken in Summerland, California as a Pelican floats through the air. Dark Shadow
A rusted out VW Westfalia in Summerland, California. Classic!
A fantastic day comes to an end in Summerland, California. Summerland Sundown
This is a locals house / junk collection in Summerland, California. Beautiful Junk
A classic wood structure still standing and being used in Summerland, California. Dated!
Yellow flowers growing on an old tree that is giving us all the peace sign.  One of the many beautiful artifacts in Summerland, California. Peace
Rocks spread out over the California coast in Summerland. Beach Rocks
A wild California cactus growing in Summerland. Cactus
A No parking any time sign covered in wild plants that leave no space to even park cars. Shot in Summerland, California. No parking any time
Railroad tracks that bend through Summerland, California. Tracks
Two classic Willeys Jeeps in Summerland, California. Willeys X 2
A classic rusted Chevy truck in Summerland, California. Rusted
One of the many electricity towers that web throughout the San Fernando Valley. This one is in Tarzana, California. Electricity #2
A white flower growing wild in Summerland, California. White Flower
An american classic - GTO!  This beauty was found in Summerland, California. GTO
Another amazing sundown in Summerland, California that lights up the sky in yellow and oranges. Summerland Sundown #2
A twisted grouping of branches growing wild in Summerland, California. Twisted
An anchored sailboat near the beach in Summerland, California. Sailboat
Another beautiful plant blooming purple leaves in Summerland, California. Purple & Green
This railroad crossing was photographed in Summerland, California. Railroad Crossing
Wood and rock stairs custom built at a home in Summerland, California. Wood + Rock Stairs
One of the many stunning hills in the Santa Monica Mountains. Located in Tarzana, California. Hillside #2
A public sign in the Santa Monica Mountains warning hikers that they are being filmed. This sign is in Tarzana, California. Photo Enforcement Area
Wood and nails from an outdoor staircase in Tarzana, California. Wood + Nails
Parking lines painted on the cement on a hill in Tarzana, California. Lines
A metal trash can located in Tarzana, California. Push
A bench located perfectly next to a rock to sit in, while hiking in the Santa Monica Mountains in Tarzana, California Sit
Solar panels at the top of the hills in Tarzana, California. These panels are located along hiking trails away from the suburban sprawl. Solar Panels
A fantastic view of the San Fernando Valley from the hills of Tarzana, California. View
Clouds over the sky in the San Fernando Valley. Clouds #2
A rock path leading to one of the hiking trails in Tarzana, California. Hike
A cherry orchard off the off the 5 freeway in Central California. Cherry Orchard
After working as a government trapper in the American northwest for 20 years, John Ehn moved with his family to Burbank, California, in 1941. He built a home there, which evolved into a motel he named the Old Trapper’s Lodge. The lobby was filled with weapons, animal pelts, and memorabilia gathered during his days as a trapper. Proud of his pioneer heritage, he proceeded to decorate the grounds of the motel with a series of life-size concrete statues enacting the Gold Rush and encounters with Native American tribes in the Old West. Subjects included fight scenes between mountain men and Indians, dance hall girls, family groups, and a cemetery, complete with inscribed tombstones.

Upon the demise of the motel in 1980, the large statues were transported and installed on the campus of nearby Pierce College. However, while the sculptures were welcomed, funds for their conservation and maintenance were not available until an anonymous group of supporters repaired and repainted the sculptures and continue to do so. The installation was declared a California Historical Landmark in 1985. Several of the smaller sculptures were distributed to museums by Seymour Rosen, a folk-art site-preservation activist and founder of Saving and Preserving Arts and Cultural Environments (SPACES), which continues to advocate for the preservation of folk art environments. John Ehn #2
After working as a government trapper in the American northwest for 20 years, John Ehn moved with his family to Burbank, California, in 1941. He built a home there, which evolved into a motel he named the Old Trapper’s Lodge. The lobby was filled with weapons, animal pelts, and memorabilia gathered during his days as a trapper. Proud of his pioneer heritage, he proceeded to decorate the grounds of the motel with a series of life-size concrete statues enacting the Gold Rush and encounters with Native American tribes in the Old West. Subjects included fight scenes between mountain men and Indians, dance hall girls, family groups, and a cemetery, complete with inscribed tombstones.

Upon the demise of the motel in 1980, the large statues were transported and installed on the campus of nearby Pierce College. However, while the sculptures were welcomed, funds for their conservation and maintenance were not available until an anonymous group of supporters repaired and repainted the sculptures and continue to do so. The installation was declared a California Historical Landmark in 1985. Several of the smaller sculptures were distributed to museums by Seymour Rosen, a folk-art site-preservation activist and founder of Saving and Preserving Arts and Cultural Environments (SPACES), which continues to advocate for the preservation of folk art environments. John Ehn #3
One of the many cracking hillsides in the Tarzana Hills that have probably been around for thousands of years. Cracked
Knapp's Castle is a landmark ruined mansion in the Santa Ynez Mountains near Santa Barbara, California. Located near East Camino Cielo in the Los Padres National Forest, the ridge-top site has a panoramic view of Lake Cachuma and the Santa Ynez Valley. It is a popular destination for hikers and photographers.

George Owen Knapp, founder of Union Carbide, built Knapp's Castle shortly after purchasing the 160-acre (0.65 km2) parcel in 1916. In 1940, Frances Holden bought the property and invited her friend, world-famous opera singer Lotte Lehmann, to move in. The mansion was destroyed by a forest fire only five weeks later, and now only the massive sandstone foundations, fireplace pillars and walls of the original seven structures remain intact. The parcel is still privately owned but open to the public.
In January 2011, the site was undergoing new construction by the property owner, with a stone amphitheatre-style addition, some reinforcements, and other work. The county ordered a stop to the construction due to a lack of permits, but the construction equipment remains on site. Knapp's Castle
A round cactus growing wild in the mountains of Santa Barbara. Wild Cactus
One of the many leaves from the trees of Santa Barbara, Leaves
Santa Barbara wild cactus growing throughout the mountains. Wild Cactus #2
Another great day in Leo Carillo State Beach, California. Surf or Fly
A Jeep left for dead that now is a storage unit for scrape metal. Abandonded #2
A rusted metal rope attached to a cement pole on a hiking trail in Tarzana, California. Aged
A land stuck boat that seems to be shipwrecked in the mountains of Santa Barbara. Shipwrecked
A beautiful Mallard Duck floating in the water in Tarzana, California. Mallard Duck
Beautiful, naturally colored eggs - hatched in a suburban backyard in Tarzana, California. Suburban Eggs
A Mallard Duck enjoying a swim in Tarzana, California. Mallard Duck #2
Griffith Observatory's unique architecture and setting, compelling programmatic offerings, and cinematic exposure have made it one of the most famous and visited landmarks in southern California. Tens of millions have come to walk the inside of the building, view the live planetarium shows, or simply gaze out towards the coast and the heavens. This cultural and scientific icon owes its existence to the dream of one man, Griffith Jenkins Griffith, and to the dedicated scientists and public servants who worked to fulfill his vision of making astronomy and observation accessible to all.

A Great City Needs a Great Park

The land on which Griffith Observatory sits was once a part of a Spanish settlement known as Rancho Los Felis. The Spanish Governor of California bequeathed it to Corporal Vincente Felis in the 1770s. The land stayed in the Felis family for over a century, being subdivided through generations, until Griffith, a wealthy mining speculator, purchased what remained of the rancho in 1882.

Griffith J. Griffith was born in Wales in 1850 and came to America as a teenager. He worked as a journalist and mining advisor before making his fortune in Mexican silver mines and, subsequently, southern California real estate. He moved to Los Angeles after purchasing the rancho and spent the rest of his life there. Griffith enjoyed being referred to as ?Colonel Griffith?, though it seems he was never officially commissioned as an officer (nor is it clear that he even served in the military).

During a tour abroad, Griffith had discovered the great public parks of Europe and decided that his home, Los Angeles, would need a "Great Park" for the public in order to become a great city. On December 16, 1896, he donated 3,015 acres of Rancho Los Felis to the City of Los Angeles in order to create a public park in his name. "It must be made a place of rest and relaxation for the masses, a resort for the rank and file, for the plain people," Griffith said on that occasion. "I consider it my obligation to make Los Angeles a happy, cleaner, and finer city. I wish to pay my debt of duty in this way to the community in which I have prospered." Griffith Park became the largest urban park in the U.S. with wilderness areas. The City Council proclamation accepting Griffith's gift hangs (along with a portrait commissioned after his death) in the W.M. Keck Foundation Central Rotunda inside Griffith Observatory.

Griffith's Transforming Vision

Griffith J. Griffith was introduced to astronomy through the Astronomical Section of the Southern California Academy of Sciences. He was also impressed by his visits to the new research observatory established at Mount Wilson in 1904. He believed that an individual gained an enlightened perspective when looking at the skies. His reaction after looking through the 60-inch telescope at Mount Wilson -- then the largest in the world -- was described by John Anson Ford: "The experience moved him profoundly - a distant, heavenly body suddenly being brought so close and made so real!" Ford quotes Griffith as saying "Man's sense of values ought to be revised. If all mankind could look through that telescope, it would change the world!"

Griffith's experience on Mount Wilson focused his desire to make science more accessible to the public. On December 12, 1912, he offered the City of Los Angeles $100,000 for an observatory to be built on the top of Mount Hollywood to be fully owned and operated by the City of Los Angeles. Griffith's plan for the observatory would include an astronomical telescope open to free viewing, a Hall of Science designed to bring the public into contact with exhibits about the physical sciences, and a motion picture theater which would show educational films about science and other subjects. This last aspect of the plan would eventually evolve into the planetarium, a technology not invented until the 1920s.

The City Council accepted Griffith's gift and appointed him head of a three-person Trust committee to supervise the construction of the observatory and a greek theatre performing arts facility, which Griffith promised to the city the following year. Bogged down by further political debate, the project continued to be delayed. In 1916, with his health failing, Griffith realized that his vision of a public observatory would not be realized in his lifetime. He drafted a will containing bequests for the observatory and greek theatre, along with detailed specifications regarding the nature of the observatory, its location, and programmatic offerings. Griffith died on July 6, 1919.

A Dream Realized

Griffith's dream finally began to become reality in the spring of 1930, as the Griffith Trust (the governing board for the expenditures from the Griffith estate) enlisted some of the leading astronomers and scientists of the day as the core team planning the construction of Griffith Observatory. George Ellery Hale, who had overseen the creation of the great telescopes at Yerkes, Mount Wilson, and Palomar Observatories, used his knowledge to steer the overall design. Caltech physicist Edward Kurth drew up the preliminary plans and later guided the construction of the building. Russell W. Porter, the "Patron Saint" of the amateur telescope-making movement, was an invaluable aide to Kurth. In May of 1931 the Griffith Trust and Los Angeles Park Commissioners selected architects John C. Austin and Frederick M. Ashley to oversee the final plans for the new observatory building. Austin and Ashley hired Kurth to direct the project with Porter as consultant.

Caltech and Mount Wilson engineers drew up plans for the Observatory's fundamental exhibits: a Foucault Pendulum, a 38-foot-diameter model of a section of the Moon sculpted by artist Roger Hayward, and a "three-in-one" coelostat (three tracking mirrors on one mount to feed three separate solar telescopes) so that the public could study the Sun in the Hall of Science. The Trust judged the 12-inch Zeiss refracting telescope as the best commercially available instrument of its kind and selected it to be used as the public telescope. A 75-foot-wide theater --one of the largest in the world -- was designed to hold a Zeiss planetarium projector. The planetarium had been invented in 1923, four years after Griffith's death, and his family agreed with the Trustees that it more fully honored his intent than the originally planned cinematic theater. The Observatory's planetarium was the third to be completed in the United States.

Groundbreaking for Griffith Observatory occurred on June 20, 1933, with the William Simpson Construction Company as the builder. While the building quickly took shape, Edward Kurth was tragically killed in a car accident in February 1934. The Griffith Trust brought in physicist Rudolph Langer to oversee the completion of the building, and Philip Fox, Director of the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, whose advice had been sought in the earliest phases of planning, was now increasingly involved with designing exhibits for the Hall of Science.

Griffith Observatory was shaped not only by the minds of scientists but also by the times in which it was built. A major earthquake in Long Beach in March 1933 -- just as construction plans were being finalized -- led the architects to abandon the planned terra cotta exterior in favor of strengthening and thickening the building's concrete walls. Lower-than-usual prices caused by the Great Depression enabled the selection of the finest materials of the day for the interior walls, floors, and finishes, making the building both beautiful and durable. And a depression-era Federal public works program employed six sculptors to create a public sculpture at Griffith Observatory. The resulting Astronomers Monument, dedicated in November 1934, was hailed as one of the most important pieces of art to be completed by the program.

The dedication and formal opening of Griffith Observatory took place amid much fanfare on May 14, 1935. On that day, the Griffith Trust transferred ownership of the building to the City of Los Angeles; the City's Department of Recreation and Parks (called the ?Department of Parks? at the time of the transfer) has operated the facility ever since. From the moment the Observatory was opened to the public, those who served as full-time and part-time staff worked daily to fulfill the original vision of the Griffith Observatory as an educational and inspirational resource for all of society. Griffith Observatory
An amazing 3D version of Saturn hanging inside The Griffith Observatory. Saturn
Greeting visitors upon their arrival at Griffith Observatory, the fully restored Astronomers Monument is a large outdoor concrete sculpture on the front lawn that pays homage to six of the greatest astronomers of all time:

- Hipparchus (about 150 B.C.)
- Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543)
- Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
- Johannes Kepler (1571-1630)
- Isaac Newton (1642-1727)
- William Herschel (1738-1822)

The monument is an enduring product of the great economic depression of the 1930s, when New Deal initiatives created federally funded work programs to employ skilled workers in many fields at a time when they would otherwise remain idle and without income. One of the first of these programs, the Public Works of Art Project (PWAP), began in December 1933. Soon thereafter, in cooperation with the Los Angeles Park Commission, PWAP commissioned a sculpture project on the grounds of the new Observatory (which was under construction). Using a design by local artist Archibald Garner and materials donated by the Women's' Auxiliary of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, Garner and five other artists sculpted and cast the concrete monument and figures. Each artist was responsible for sculpting one astronomer; one of the artists, George Stanley, was also the creator of the famous "Oscar" statuette.

On November 25, 1934 (about six months prior to the opening of the Observatory), a celebration took place to mark completion of the Astronomers Monument, which had proven to be the most ambitious creation of the PWAP. The only "signature" on the Astronomers Monument is "PWAP 1934" referring to the federal agency which funded the project and the year it was completed. Astronomers Monument
Urban sprawl or suburban sprawl describes the expansion of human populations away from central urban areas into previously remote and rural areas, particularly resulting in low-density communities reliant upon heavy automobile usage. Urban sprawl is a multifaceted concept of community planning especially relevant to developed nations (and primarily the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand), involving topics that range from the outward spreading of a city and its suburbs, to low-density and auto-dependent development on rural land (which can cause an expansion of the daily urban system), examination of impact of high segregation between residential and commercial uses, and analysis of various design features to determine which may encourage car dependency. Urban Spawl
This photo is a macro shot of a screen door. Screen
A small piece of green glass that had been in sea for quite sometime in Malibu, California. Sea Glass
Thorns on an Aloe vera plant in Tarzana, California. Thorns
Graffiti in Reseda, California. Graffiti in Reseda
One of my trusted wrenches that has been with me for years. Wrench
A rock with a hole inside it spotted while hiking in Woodland Hills - Santa Monica Mountains. A rock with a hole
This shot is taken real close up on a large sliding glass door. Glass
A close up shot of a shell that came from Malibu, California. Shell
This is a abstract, macro photo of a sheet of metal. Duplication
A hummingbird sitting on it's nest hanging on a thin branch on a tree. Hummingbird
Another beautiful sunset in Cayucos, California. Sunset in Cayucos
Morro Rock is a 581-foot volcanic plug located just offshore from Morro Bay, California, at the entrance to Morro Bay Harbor. A causeway connects it with the shore, effectively making it a tied island. The area surrounding the base of Morro Rock can be visited. The rock is protected as the Morro Rock State Preserve. Climbing on the rock or disturbing the bird life is forbidden by law. Morro Rock
A family of hummingbirds that are protecting their eggs in a small nest in Tarzana, California. Two Hummingbirds
Morro Rock is a 581-foot volcanic plug located just offshore from Morro Bay, California, at the entrance to Morro Bay Harbor. A causeway connects it with the shore, effectively making it a tied island. The area surrounding the base of Morro Rock can be visited. The rock is protected as the Morro Rock State Preserve. Climbing on the rock or disturbing the bird life is forbidden by law. Morro Rock #2
A seagull ready to take flight in Morro Bay, California. Ready for Flight
Thousands of these alien looking jellyfish were scattered along the coastline in Zuma Beach (Malibu), California. Alien Jellyfish
This photo was shot off the Santa Monica Pier on a very busy beach day in Santa Monica. Thousands of people enjoying the beach on this Labor Day weekend in Santa Monica, California. Santa Monica Beach
A beautiful birdhouse in Santa Barbara, California. Birdhouse
Railroad ties stacked perfectly In Santa Barbara, California.

A railroad tie/railway tie/crosstie (North America), or railway sleeper (Europe, Australia & Asia) is a rectangular support for the rails in railroad tracks. Generally laid perpendicular to the rails, ties transfer loads to the track ballast and subgrade, hold the rails upright, and keep them spaced to the correct gauge.

Railroad ties were traditionally made of wood, but pre-stressed concrete is now widely used, especially in Europe and Asia. Steel ties are common on secondary lines in the UK; plastic composite ties are also employed, although far less than wood or concrete. As of January 2008, the approximate market share in North America for traditional and wood ties was 91.5%, the remainder being concrete, steel, azobé (red ironwood) and plastic composite. Railroad Ties
A lizard on the Backbone Trail in Malibu, California. The Backbone Trail is a long distance trail extending 67.79 miles (109.10 km) across the length of the Santa Monica Mountains in the U.S. state of California. Its western terminus is Point Mugu State Park and its eastern terminus is Will Rogers State Historic Park in Pacific Palisades. The trail is open to hikers throughout its length; mountain bicyclists and horseback riders are allowed on suitable portions of the trail as posted. Lizard in the wild
Bolts holding a bridge together on the Backbone Trail in Malibu, California. Industrial
A beautiful tree on a hiking path along the Backbone Trail in Malibu, California. Tree
A wood bridge over a dry creek along the Backbone Trail in Malibu, California. Bridge in the wild