Friday, November 27, 2015

More Thanksgiving winter magic

We spent Thanksgiving at my mother-in-law’s place in Mount Shasta in the mountains of far northern California. On Wednesday, we had a nice dusting of snow—about an inch—but Thanksgiving day proper gave us brilliant blue skies, crisp air, and plenty of sunshine.

After breakfast I did some exploring, braving the 20°F temperature. I hope the photos will give you an idea of how beautiful this part of California is.

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This is the same barn I showed you in this week’s Wednesday Vignette

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It looks quite different in the sun

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Snow-covered trees west of town

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I love how crisp the snow-covered trees look

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Mount Shasta, at 14,179 feet (4,322 m) the fifth highest peak in California, dominates the view towards the east

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Fallen apples from the tree above

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Mount Shasta towering above the town

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The mountain is visible from virtually anywhere in town unless your view is obscured by trees

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My favorite view from my Thanksgiving day outing

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I love how the mountain is framed by the tree

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A picture-postcard view indeed

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Fallen oak leaf in the snow

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These folks have a fantastic view of the mountain!

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Here is the “other” mountain: 6,334 ft. (1,931 m) Black Butte

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When Mount Shasta is invisible because of low clouds (as it was on Tuesday and Wednesday), many people driving through on Interstate 5 mistake Black Butte for Mount Shasta although it’s significantly smaller

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Black Butte and monkey puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana). This is one of at least three monkey puzzle trees in Mount Shasta that I know of. This goes to show how cold hardy this Chilean native really is (Mount Shasta routinely experiences lows in the single digits).

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A bit of left-over fall color

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The view towards the west is dominated by the Trinity Mountains, 9,037 ft. (2,754 m) Mount Eddy being the highest peak

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Another view of Black Butte

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Mount Shasta

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Mount Shasta

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Smoldering burn pile, looking remarkably scenic on top of freshly fallen snow

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Night-time view of the house up the street from my mother-in-law’s

Tomorrow it will be back to reality. Which has its advantages, too: Davis is much warmer than Mount Shasta, and my wool socks can go back in the drawer.

12 comments:

  1. I think those are the best shots of Shasta I've ever seen. The sky's so blue, the snow so white. Everything's so crisp, so brilliant. I enjoyed your Thanksgiving voyage very much. I didn't realize that there was a City of Mt. Shasta. Thanks for giving/sharing with us.

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    1. Wow, that's quite a compliment! Thank you very much!

      My favorite photos of Mount Shasta usually involve lenticular clouds, but really nice ones aren't that common.

      The town has about 3,500 inhabitants. Since it's right on I-5, it has a lot of services, including motels, restaurants and shopping, as well as an upscale golf resort.

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    2. Wow! this is like a different world. I have only driven by Mt. Shasta during the summer times. It is so nice to see the winter part of it. Thanks for sharing all these awesome photos.

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    3. Laura, Mount Shasta is a popular place in the winter. There's a ski area just outside of town.

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  2. Beautiful photos Gerhard. I always enjoy the drive between Dunsmuir and the border, and Shasta is one of my overnight pit-stop places if I am on the way back from Oregon. I expect many people just zoom on by the area without taking the time to explore.

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    1. Mount Shasta is a great place to spend the night. But you're right, most people just speed through without stopping. They do miss out--there's much to see in this part of California.

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  3. Impressive as those snow-capped mountains are, I couldn't help but find myself sighing over those gorgeous deep blue skies. Even after a rain, you don't see smog-free skies like those here.

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    1. Yes, the skies are incredible pure and the air is so clean. That's country living for you :-)

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  4. Thank you for braving the 20 degree temperatures to take these totally 'cool' photos. Not only are they cool but somehow very inspirational.

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  5. Thank you for the eye candy! My favorite photo is the leaf on the snow--so simple and a striking contrast.

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  6. Gorgeous photos! I know California has lots of mountains, but I still somehow forget how cold it can get in the higher elevations. I think it was colder there than in my area!

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