Author Archives: RuggyBearLA - Page 2

01-01-19 – Salton Sea



Once a Pleistocene age sea, the Salton Sea was accidentally re-created when overzealous tapping of the Colorado River led to a catastrophic failure of the waterway’s path in 1905. For 2 years the Colorado emptied its bounty into the Salton Sink, before engineers were finally able to repair the damage they had inadvertently caused. The Salton Sea was reborn.

The Salton Sea had some success as a resort area, with Salton City, Salton Sea Beach, and Desert Shores, on the western shore and Desert Beach, North Shore, and Bombay Beach, built on the eastern shore in the 1950s. However, many of the settlements substantially shrank in size, or have been abandoned, mostly due to the increasing salinity and pollution of the lake over the years from agricultural runoff and other sources. Many of the species of fish that lived in the sea have been killed off by the combination of pollutants, salt levels, and algal blooms. Dead fish have been known to wash up in mass quantities on the beaches. The smell of the lake, combined with the stench of the decaying fish, also contributed to the decline of the tourist industry around the Salton Sea.

Many people now visit the Salton Sea and the surrounding settlements to explore the abandoned structures and art installations such as Salvation Mountain and East Jesus, near the town of Niland, 1.5 miles (2.4 km) southeast of the sea, with a population of 1,006. Evidence of geothermal activity is also visible. Mudpots and mud volcanoes are found on the eastern side of the Salton Sea. A number of geothermal electricity generation plants are located along the southeastern shore of the Salton Sea in Imperial County.

The US Geological Survey describes the smell of the Salton Sea as “objectionable”, “noxious”, “unique”, and “pervasive”.

12-23-18 – Alabama Hills



The Alabama Hills are a formation of rounded rocks and eroded hills set between the jagged peaks of the Sierra Nevada and the geologically complex Inyo Mountains. Both geologic features were shaped by the same uplifting occurring 100 million years ago. These hills received their name from prospectors and minors based on the confederate warship the CSS Alabama.

11-04-18 – Red Rock Canyon



Red Rock Canyon State Park features scenic desert cliffs, buttes and spectacular rock formations. The park is located where the southernmost tip of the Sierra Nevada converges with the El Paso Mountains. Each tributary canyon is unique, with vivid colors. After wet winters, the park’s floral displays are notable.

10-30-18 – Yosemite



Yosemite National Park is in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains. It’s famed for its giant, ancient sequoia trees, and for Tunnel View, the iconic vista of towering Bridalveil Fall and the granite cliffs of El Capitan and Half Dome. In Yosemite Village are shops, restaurants, lodging, the Yosemite Museum and the Ansel Adams Gallery, with prints of the photographer’s renowned black-and-white landscapes of the area.

10-21-18 – Mono Lake



Mono Lake (/ˈmoʊnoʊ/ MOH-noh) is a large, shallow saline soda lake in Mono County, California, formed at least 760,000 years ago as a terminal lake in an endorheic basin. The lack of an outlet causes high levels of salts to accumulate in the lake. These salts also make the lake water alkaline.

This desert lake has an unusually productive ecosystem based on brine shrimp that thrive in its waters, and provides critical habitat for two million annual migratory birds that feed on the shrimp and alkali flies. Historically, the native Kutzadika’a people derived nutrition from the Ephydra hians pupae, which live in the shallow waters around the edge of the lake.

When the city of Los Angeles diverted water from the freshwater streams flowing into the lake, it lowered the lake level, which imperiled the migratory birds.

10-21-18 – Autumn in the Sierras



The natural landscape in the Eastern Sierra, where rugged granite canyons are carved by rushing streams and framed by an azure sky, offers a spellbinding contrast of colors during autumn golden, crimson and orange aspen and cottonwoods as far as the eye can see.

10-14-18 – Mono Lake



Mono Lake (/ˈmoʊnoʊ/ MOH-noh) is a large, shallow saline soda lake in Mono County, California, formed at least 760,000 years ago as a terminal lake in an endorheic basin. The lack of an outlet causes high levels of salts to accumulate in the lake. These salts also make the lake water alkaline.

This desert lake has an unusually productive ecosystem based on brine shrimp that thrive in its waters, and provides critical habitat for two million annual migratory birds that feed on the shrimp and alkali flies. Historically, the native Kutzadika’a people derived nutrition from the Ephydra hians pupae, which live in the shallow waters around the edge of the lake.

When the city of Los Angeles diverted water from the freshwater streams flowing into the lake, it lowered the lake level, which imperiled the migratory birds.

10-14-18 – Aspendell



Aspendell, CA. Higher in elevation than Donner Pass & Truckee, this Eastern Sierra granite canyon is located north of Mount Whitney, along the upper portion of Bishop Creek. The large groves of aspen trees can be spectacular in autumn.

07-11-18 – Sequoia National Park



The park is notable for its giant sequoia trees, including the General Sherman tree, the largest tree on Earth. The General Sherman tree grows in the Giant Forest, which contains five of the ten largest trees in the world. The Giant Forest is connected by the Generals Highway to Kings Canyon National Park’s General Grant Grove, home of the General Grant tree among other giant sequoias. The park’s giant sequoia forests are part of 202,430 acres of old-growth forests shared by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. The parks preserve a landscape that still resembles the southern Sierra Nevada before Euro-American settlement.

05-28_29-18 – North Rim Grand Canyon



A worthwhile trip for those who enjoy the road less traveled, the North Rim, or “other side” of Grand Canyon is visited by only 10% of all Grand Canyon visitors. The centerpiece of the park is the Grand Canyon, a gorge of the Colorado River. The Grand Canyon is 277 miles (446 km) long, up to 18 miles (29 km) wide and attains a depth of over a mile (6,000 feet or 1,800 metres). Nearly two billion years of the Earth’s geological history have been exposed as the Colorado River and its tributaries cut their channels through layer after layer of rock while the Colorado Plateau was uplifted. Designated as an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979.