Monday, January 7, 2008

After the rains

After the rains - Mt Baldy
Originally uploaded by bonbayel.
After several days of rainy weather, when our view to the north is just clouds, this morning we could see that our mountain is covered with snow!
I don't know how many times I've taken this picture, but it's different, of course, each time!
If I'd gotten out earlier to take my picture the sky would have been even bluer. I think another front is on its way. But I love the billowing clouds down in the valley between here and there.

When my now husband asked me to join him here in Upland, I found the town on Yahoo maps and was horrified at the precise mesh of the streets (which I have since discovered was laid out by a Canadian mathematician named Chaffey, which is why our main street is called Euclid Ave.)

But then I could see that there was a large area to the north of town that didn't seem to have any roads, so I figured that was encouraging, without knowing what was there. (This was before Google maps!)

John says that when he first started coming to the area, before he retired here, that the smog was usually so bad that he wasn't even aware of the mountains, and he'd only been up the Mt Baldy Rd once. as far as the village.

All of my first pictures (in August 2000) had the mountain in the background, including one from the Walmart parking lot, which has a great almost undisturbed view of the mountains. The chain of mountains starts at the coast as the Santa Monica Mountains, continues past Pasadena as the San Gabriels (which is what these are), goes down a bit to the Cajon Pass, where Interstate 15 takes people to Las Vegas, goes up again becomng the San Bernardinos with Big Bear Mountain, down to the pass where Interstate 10 takes us to Palm Springs, and then turns south with Mt San Jacinto, almost all the way to the Mexican border, passing the Anza Borrego Desert along the way.

That gives us a lovely protected valley. The mountain ranges unfortunately also trap the winds coming accross the Los Angeles basin filled with smog from the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, often causing a yellow layer of smog down the valley. Since we live at about 1500 ft, we are usually looking down on it when we look south down Euclid.

I love the sound of the rain at night. I've been missing it. And we need the rain to fill up our water reserves which are sorely depleted. We have to learn to use less water, particularly for gardening and lawns. Nevertheless, we are learning. I read recently that Los Angeles used 30% less water recently than, say 20 years ago, because of conservation and efficiency efforts, including low flow toilets and more efficient watering systems, all in a period with high population growth. So it can be done!

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