Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Collier Canyon Project

I've worked at the same job now for 8 years. In fact, now that I'm thinking about it, I just this last week passed that anniversary date. As is true with all jobs, it's really awful and really great. I must say that just now I'm grateful for being gainfully employed, so I'm not griping, believe me. I have two possible driving routes to work, one on a piece of freeway that consistently makes the top 3 worst congested commutes in the Bay Area, the other using a scenic backroad. Guess which one I take?

I have seen so many interesting things on my little backroad, the aforementioned Collier Canyon. The bird life is wonderful, although a little difficult to see sometimes from a moving car, but I consistently see red-tailed hawks on the power poles, scrub jays making a racket that can be heard through rolled-up windows, killdeer swooping across the road and loggerhead shrikes sitting on their catbird seats. (I recently read a blurb somewhere that the phrase "catbird seat" was actually in reference to shrikes.) The residents of the houses along the road keep horses, several breeds of cattle including some longhorn numbers, llama, sheep and goats. I've seen lots of wildlife: deer, wild pigs, coyotes, skunks, the everpresent and numerous ground squirrels and the remains of opossum and raccoon.

Toward one end of the road is an absolutely magnificent view of Mt. Diablo.

All in all, this drive makes the extra few minutes it takes worth it and can anyone argue with avoiding the freeway?

I've started taking my camera along some days to record it. Here is something from the start of this project. This is a ewe from the sheep pen.

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