Holiday/Monthly challenge: a red and a rescue

It’s Spain’s Constitution Day, and it seems appropriate to celebrate their holiday while we’re over here. When in Spain, do as the Spaniards do. Actually, we didn’t see anything very holidayish here in Mojácar on our day ride to El Marchal, but we did have an awesome ride.  The featured photo is of a ladder snake … Continue reading "Holiday/Monthly challenge: a red and a rescue"

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November’s Challenge:a kid in Córdoba

I’ve deleted this post, but am leaving its place here for the sake of the attached comments.  The reactions to this month’s challenge have been quite a surprise to me, and educational.  I’ve got mixed feelings about the subject but thank you all for sharing your thoughts.  I’ll come up with something hopefully less controversial … Continue reading "November’s Challenge:a kid in Córdoba"

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Rush Creek Open Space

Around here the official rainy season begins on 1 October. Based on annual averages, by now we should have received some significant rainfall. Not the case. Not a drop has fallen, and we’re dry. Dangerously dry. Santa Rosa and northern Sonoma County just survived—barely—the impact of multiple days of “public safety” power shutdowns, mandatory evacuations, … Continue reading "Rush Creek Open Space"

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November/holiday challenges: All Souls Day

I was rueing the fact that the November kid’s challenge came too late for Halloween this year, but little did I know that Portugal doesn’t celebrate Halloween. They celebrate All Souls Day, the day after Halloween and the first of November.  Perfect for the November challenge, and perfect for doing double duty for the Holiday … Continue reading "November/holiday challenges: All Souls Day"

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Challenge of the month, November 2019: let’s hear it for the children!

This month’s challenge was inspired by Halloween, because it’s such a great time for children watching.  Unfortunately Halloween falls in October this year, but maybe you could trick the judges and treat us with an early entry. Whatever.  This month is dedicated to children – yours, trick or treaters, kids on bikes, waifs on the … Continue reading "Challenge of the month, November 2019: let’s hear it for the children!"

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Tolay Again

Despite increasingly shrill warnings from Pacific Gas & Electric—they who already admitted liability for previous conflagrations and dozens of deaths, and who entered bankruptcy in order to protect their asses, I mean assets—about the likelihood of an impending shutdown of the electric grid across northern California to prevent more wildfires sparked by their power lines, … Continue reading "Tolay Again"

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Challenge of the month, October 2019: Flagging interest

With the coldest and wettest (or hottest and driest, depending) part of the year on the horizon, is your cycling interest flagging?  If so, we’ve got just the challenge to revive it: Flags!  National, regional, ecumenical, corporate; straight out in a gale force wind, lightly luffing in a breeze, completely limp; up a pole, on … Continue reading "Challenge of the month, October 2019: Flagging interest"

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August Challenge: the Portland Heritage Tree Quest

Last day of August!  I’ve just got time for one last challenge post before closing the book. This one has lots  of trees, but I featured the skeleton of a dying Sycamore maple out of respect.  The post as a whole though might interest both tree and quest fans, because it’s the first stage of … Continue reading "August Challenge: the Portland Heritage Tree Quest"

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August challenge: the trees of Irvington

We’re staying this week in Irvington, one of Portland’s inner east side neighborhoods.  It feels a bit like living in an Arboretum, with a great diversity of mature trees – there must be fifty different species here, often grouped in short rows along parking strips, each block featuring a different tree than the one before. … Continue reading "August challenge: the trees of Irvington"

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August challenge: the Kalaloch Tree of Life

The Sitka Spruce is a pretty amazing tree.  Previously we had a look at the largest known Sitka Spruce in the world, soaring nearly two hundred feet into the sky.  Today’s featured image is a much smaller example, but nearly as remarkable.  The Kalaloch Tree of Life ekes out its precarious existence on the wild … Continue reading "August challenge: the Kalaloch Tree of Life"

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Bikes on White Mountain

At 14,252 feet in elevation, White Mountain Peak in the White Mountains is the third highest summit in California. A long, rough, unpaved road (requiring four-wheel drive and high clearance) leads up from the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest visitor center several thousand feet to the University of California’s Barcroft Research Station at 12,470 feet. Normally … Continue reading "Bikes on White Mountain"

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Tioga Pass, part 1

Tioga Road across the Sierra through Yosemite National Park is one of the most spectacular high mountain routes (up to nearly 10,000 feet) in the US. But all the usual reasons—narrow lanes, lack of shoulders, curves, climbs, heavy traffic, lumbering RVs, inattentive drivers—make it a dicey proposition under normal circumstances. Consequently, bicyclists love the opportunity … Continue reading "Tioga Pass, part 1"

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