Wednesday, November 30, 2011

McWay Falls

The McWay Falls, about 36 miles south of Carmel on the California Coast, were on my "to do list" for quite some years. I had seen awesome images and of course wanted to take some myself. But how things go with "to do lists", I never got around to really do it....
Until now!
A few weeks ago my friend and Cherie I spontaneously decided to take on the 3+ hour drive down to the waterfall.
Alone the drive along Highway 1 is worth the effort. Although spoiled through living on the coast, we had to get out several times to take pictures and ahh and ohh.

After a long and windy drive, at last we made it:

As planned, we arrived shortly before sunset and could watch the light playing in the cove before the sun finally disappeared in the ocean.

McWay Falls, named after Christopher McWay, an early settler, is not only called the "most beautifully situated waterfall on the California Coast" by the "World of Waterfalls", the park it is located in also has an intriguing history.

In the 1920s Lathrop and Helen Brown purchased McWays Saddle Rock Ranch and built two houses in the area where today the waterfall overlook is situated. The main house supposedly was rather fancy with black marble and a huge panorama window overlooking the ocean. Quite an accomplishment for that time.
Helen Brown became good friends with Julia Pfeiffer Burns, a pioneer woman homesteading on an adjacent ridge.

In 1961 Helen Brown donated the 1800 acre Saddle Rock Ranch to the state under two conditions, it was to be named after Julia Pfeiffer Burns, her admired friend and that the land to the west of Highway 1 should be "unmarred by further construction or out-of-place man-made improvements" and that the Waterfall House should be made into a "museum for the custody and display of indigenous Indian relics, flora and fauna of the California coastal area, and historical objects pertaining to the Big Sur country." But, if the house was not made into a museum within five years it was to be torn down......and so five years later the Waterfall House became history...

After the sun had set, the cove seemed to glow in pink. We photographed like maniacs until the light was almost gone and our exposures got so long, that the water took on a fog-like appearance.
A truly magical place!


Pelican Network

Hiking in Big Sur

World of Waterfalls

California State Parks

Saturday, November 5, 2011

November Conservation Tip

Well, we survived Halloween and the pumpkin invasion, and more holidays are on their way. Next on the list is Thanksgiving, but most everywhere the Christmas decoration is in full swing. Starbucks offers it's holiday drinks and soon we will hear Christmas carols from every speaker.
And with that the yearly quest of of finding just the right Christmas presents starts all over again....

Mid September a facebook page called "Indexed" posted the following "index card":

Somehow that strung a cord with me and now as the time comes to think about presents, I was wondering, if it would be possible to "create" presents instead of buying them.
It's not for everybody of course, but if you can bake, cook, sew, photograph, woodwork, knit or are handy in any other way, I'm sure there are projects that could make some of your friends and family happy.

For the knitters among us, I came up with a project that is easy and rather quick to accomplish, useful and trendy.

And here it is,

The Two Hour Beanie

You will need 1-2 skeins of Spud & Chloƫ Outer Super Bulky wool (60yds(55m)/100grams), this is a wool and organic cotton mix, that is so soft you won't want to stop knitting, and a set of #11/8mm double point needles. Both are available at the super friendly Princeton Yarn shop here in Half Moon Bay. If you are not living in the area, check out the Spud & Chloƫ website for a store locator, or just get similar wool.

The beanie will be rather stretchy and fit most adult heads.
Cast on 48 stitches, 12 on each double point needle. Knit K(knit)4, P(purl)4 to end of round and join. Repeat until piece is about 6 to 61/2 inch.
Decrease as follows:
1. R(round): K1, K2tog, K1, P1, P2tog, P1
2. R: K3, P3
3. R: K1, K2tog, P1, P2tog
4. R: K2, P2
5. R: K2tog, P2tog
6. R: K1, P1
7. R: K2tog 6 times, cut yarn and threat on tapestry needle, draw yarn through remaining 6 stitches and pull the beanie close, weave in yarn ends.

Fuer meine deutschen Freunde: K = rechte Masche, P = linke Masche, 2tog = zwei Maschen zusammenstricken, decrease = abnehmen