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Thursday, November 13, 2008

End of Dry Season

The hinge of the year has swung, opening the door on the season of rains. The garden has been done in by the first frosts. We are two miles from the lake so its moderating temperature at this time of year is of no help here. In visiting the gardens at Ceago Lago, I saw tomatoes and squash still thriving.

The creek bed here is still dry, but the slowly advancing waters have pooled less than a mile uipstream. The next heavy rain will recharge this part of the channel. Meanwhile it's a good place for a stroll.

Big Valley is home to various ungulates, mostly horses and cows. The deer and tule elk tend to keep to the hills. I'd love to see the Lake County Land Trust grow influential enough to aquire large lakefront parcels near the county park for the reintroduction of tule elk. The marshy land there with its extensive groves of valley oaks is now used for cattle, but is so unchanged from its original self that the elk would thrive.

The Land Trust already has protected a couple of hundred acres along the Rodman Slough, which with the addition of more
land, could be a great place for elk. Meanwhile, it's a pleasure to encounter the horses, cows and lesser beasts, each individual a personality unto itself.

The gopher snakes have retired for the season. Speaking of personality, they have a tolerant nature. They don't flee at my approach the way garter snakes would. Instead they'll accompany me while I move boards from a pile, all the while nosing around for meadow voles.

Kelseyville, in November, is slowing down after the pear and grape harvests. But there is still plenty of activity at the walnut sheds.

Kelseyville has a little gem of a Main Street. I wonder how the relocation of Kelseyville Lumber will affect its business and foot traffic. Agricultural land has been converted to residential and commercial uses at a shocking rate lately. The vistas of and from Big Valley are getting increasingly cluttered.