Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Drought In Northern California

Before we head out for our first of two trips in August (We postponed the one in July), I wanted to touch on a few drought things here in Nor Cal.

The Clipper
Sunday Morning my wife and I went down by the pond to pick Blackberries for this wonderful Blackberry cake she bakes. To access the berries you have to crawl into or onto the bushes. Been near a Blackberry bush? You only have to get within six feet and the thorns are sticking in your arms, legs, and at times your butt.

Since the bushes tend to get out of control anyway, we decided to whack them out while be collected six cups of berries. A lot of work and pain, but well worth it. It was also a lot easier when you don't have to stand in two feet of water (which I wouldn't do anyway) to whack the bushes. In the picture below, the vines started at the left of the picture and we stopped at the vines in the center. Now all I have to do is drag the pile up to be burned, if we're ever allowed to do that again.  

There used to be Blackberries there
I'd love to show you a picture of the Blackberry cake, but it's already gone. Sorry.

On to the pond, there is a little water right there in the bottom of the picture, but it's only a couple inches deep and will probably be gone when we get back home. We've been running in the 90's upward of 100 for the last couple weeks and the pond has been dropping at an alarming rate. In the ten years I've lived here I've never seen the pond go dry. Welcome to 2014.

Almost dry

The water is usually up to the drain pipe at the upper right even during the summer.

On the link for the fires in California (last post), there is one called the "Day " fire up in Modoc County. We have a friend (and fellow IT person at the casino) who has a cabin within six miles of that fire. He ran up there this past weekend and got anything of importance out, but isn't sure the cabin will be there the next trip up. We'll keep our fingers crossed.   

I know that those across the country that are being deluged, can't imagine how dry it is out here, but it's so bad that the dirt around my house is the consistency of Talcum Power even though we've been getting a little monsoonal shower here and there.

Our evacuation plan is ready and we hope we'll never have to use it.  

Bye, we're off the the North Coast. Tell you about it Saturday when we get back.


  1. Mark, as always, thanks for the update on how things are going out your way. Your drought and all the fires have got my attention. Be safe, enjoy your outing with the Clipper, and stay safe.

  2. Mark
    When will guys get some relief??? Take heart fall will soon be here, did you guys have blackberry cake with whip cream or bluebell ice cream??

    1. Hi Bill. We've been getting a little storm (monsoon moisture) her and there, but we would need solid rain, every day, for about four months just to take the edge off. With the cake, Dreyer's Vanilla.

  3. I can't think of anything positive to say regarding the drought. I guess you have to hope Mother Nature knows what she's doing.

    1. I still don't understand how our elected officials think throwing money at the drought will help. Money can't give us water.

  4. This drought sucks... that is all i have to say about that! have a safe trip!