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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Mendocino National Forest

Drove north from Vacaville to Willows, fueled up and then turned west toward Elk City.
Stoney Gorge Resevoir
The old Stoney Creek Bridge. This open spanderel cross wall bridge, very few of these in CA, was built in 1919 for $23,420.00.
A curious doe peers over the brush near Elk City.
Spotted this barn just before entering the national forest.
A sign like this one is a nice alternative to a locked gate.
Looking back at Gravelly Ridge and Stoney Creek Valley,
Near Kern Point.
Headed south toward Felkner Hill.
Encountered the first snow and ice at about 5000 feet on the north slopes of Felkner Hill.
Felkner Hill summit.
Felkner Hill benchmark.
The first of many roads displayed on my topographical maps that are now closed. One was the road to the summit of Sheetiron Mountain.
Near the summit of the Kneecap is an interesting piece of art. Several questions come to mind when viewing this stump and chair. Who put the chair there and how long has it been there?
Kneecap Camp.

While standing in the dark looking at the stars I felt a presence over my right shoulder. I turned and saw what seemed to be someone hugging the tree next to me. It was a creepy moment.
Preparing to leave Kneecap Camp before dawn.
Driving a snowy, icy road down from Kneecap Camp. A lot of animal sign on the Kneecap.
 Dawn slowly arrives and lights the road ahead.
An open gate provided access to the Kneecap.
On just about every trip we find errant balloons. When we do it always make me think about how many Japanese Balloon Bombs remain undiscovered in the Western States.
More snow and ice near Hell's Half Acre.
Hiked over to Pole Point. One of six peaks bagged on this trip.
Crossing Horse Creek,
Many steep grades equals 117 miles on 2/3's of a tank. Time to head out of the forest and find a gas station.
The bridge across Rattlesnake Creek is still covered with frost at 11:30 AM.
Close up of frost crystals.
Elk herd near Lake Pillsbury.
A bull elk seems to know that I have eaten elk steak and liked it.
The drive to fuel was another 45 minutes.


  1. I love the hugging tree. And when i think of how scared you were, i get a smile. What if Jan found it first? you can imagine the scream she would have let out! Did you peep in the ban? What was inside?
    American racing Wheels

  2. Jan was not with me on this trip but I think she would have found the tree very creepy.