April 14, 2015

That Griffith Park Cougar

P-22 has gotten himself more publicity by wandering out of Griffith Park and taking of residence in the crawl space under a home in Los Feliz. The map below shows the outlines of that neighborhood, according to Google.

permalink | April 14, 2015 at 12:03 PM | Comments (1)

April 10, 2015

Desert Hot Springs Boundaries

Let it be a mystery no longer. I took this map from the PDF version that's on the city's website.
Desert Hot Springs Boundary Map 2014
Click this and you will get surprisingly detailed map of the city
with which you ought to be able to resolve any number of questions. It includes the little detail that I-10 is completely within our boundaries between Palm Drive and Indian. The city limits do not run along the median, but along the south side.

permalink | April 10, 2015 at 07:33 PM | Comments (0)

April 7, 2015

Lake Merritt

Jeff and I went for a nighttime walk around Lake Merritt.

Lake Merritt (0963)

Lake Merritt (0961)

Lake Merritt (0966)

Scottish Rite in Oakland (0970)

Which included a small excursion into downtown Oakland.
Fox Oakland (0975)

More photos.

permalink | April 7, 2015 at 12:12 PM | Comments (2)

March 13, 2015

Getting To And Hiking The Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path

While I was up in the San Francisco Bay area last weekend, I went over to the east bay and hiked that portion of the new Bay Bridge Trail that is open to the public. Officially it is the Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path. The part everyone is excited about is the path that is constructed along the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge which will eventually allow bicyclists and pedestrians to have direct access to Yerba Buena Island and Treasure Island. Currently, public access to the path stops just as it gets to the suspension portion of the bridge just east of the Yerba Buena tunnel.

But you don't get to bike or walk on that new path unless you find one of the trailheads in the real world environments of Emeryville or Oakland...or the bus stop on the Bay Bridge itself. The bus stop has been there all along, I'm sure, primarily to serve Caltrans employees who work on the bridge. Go to ACTransit.org if you want to figure out how to take advantage of the easy way.

The Bay Bridge's own website offers up a nearly useless map. The map has been shrunk so that no street names are readable with no link to a readable version. Your tax dollars at work. TrailLink has a better map, but you have to register to use it, and it only shows one entry point - the one I used. The Oakland Wiki has a similar map and you don't have to register to use it.

The trailhead that I did not go to is in Oakland at 37.82198, -122.301379, AKA the parking lot at Maritime Street and Burma Road.

The trailhead I did go to is in front of the Emeryville IKEA store at 37.829521,-122.292555. The current imagery at that link puts it in shadow, but it's there. The trailhead on the easterly (IKEA) side of Shellmound Street is for pedestrians and bicycles. Over on the westerly side of the street is another access point that joins the bike path that goes along there. They join immediately after the easterly branch crosses beneath the Shellmound/40th Street viaduct.

There are several bus routes that will take you right to the trailhead (or to IKEA, which is its own kind of hike):

Or, you can do like I did, and just walk the 1.8 miles from MacArthur BART. Head west on 40th Street. As you near the trailhead, 40th will go up on a viaduct that curves to the right and comes down as Shellmound Street. The trailhead is RIGHT THERE to your right. Even the blind can't miss it. If you get to the first driveway for IKEA, then you have gone too far! Turn around! Walk back the way you came a hundred feet or so and wake up and pay attention to the world around you. How in the hell did you miss that?

There is also a crosswalk at that first IKEA driveway which you can use to cross over Shellmound Street to get to the twin trailhead on that side of the street, but why expose yourself to traffic like that? The IKEA, BTW, offers restrooms and water fountains, but comes up pretty short in the hiking supply department. I'm sure you could find a water bottle in there, if you wanted to take the time to look for it. There is a Trader Joe's about half a mile north and you will have passed various retail opportunities on 40th Street.

Once you get to that IKEA trailhead, this video will give you some idea of what you could see along the path:

Here's a link to all my still photos from the hike which was about 10 miles round trip from the MacArthur station. Samples:

Pink Wall on 40th Streeet Oakland (3033)
On 40th Street in Oakland
.

Hudson (2979)
A Hudson in Emeryville
.

Easy Porsche (2978)
A Porsche, also in Emeryville
.

Pixar (2975)
Pixar Studios in, you know, Emeryville
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path Entrance (2985)
The very beginning of the trail where it curves under the Shellmound Street viaduct
.

Bay Bridge Trail Hike -  Google
Five-ish miles from MacArthur Station to the limit of the path
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (2989)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0003)
You hike under a lot of elevated highways
at first.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0013)
Currently the path is open from 7 AM to 6 PM and they say that CHP begins clearing it at 4:30
. I was on there after 4:30 and saw no sign of CHP, but a couple of local police (or sheriff's deputies) bicycled up the bridge about then. This photo was taken at about the spot where the path from Oakland joins the path from Emeryville.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path - not the last porta-potties (0017)
There is a sign at these porta-potties saying they are the last ones before the bridge
. That is not true.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3002)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path bus stop (0104A)
This is the AC Transit bus stop shelter on the Bay Bridge
.

Bus Stop On The Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3022)
FYI

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path - the last porta-potty (0025)
This is the last porta-potty before the bridge
. I didn't spot anyplace to get potable water anywhere along the trail, so bring all you need.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0038)
What's left of the old bridge on the left
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0032)
Lighting for the path on the bridge comes from these tubes situated about a foot above the pavement
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3003)
Closer to the raw end of the old bridge
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0054)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0068)
The other end of the old bridge
.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path end (0073)
As far as you can go for now
. Access to the islands is supposed to happen this summer.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3009)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0080)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3016)
Old equipment under the old Bay Bridge atop one of the support towers
. It looks electrical and I wondered why this equipment needed to be this far out from the shore.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (3025)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0114)
Lots of landscaping along the way before you get to the bridge
. Under the biggest snarl of overpasses there is a riparian habitat with all the plants and animals one might expect to find there - except not a lot of water fowl. Of course, buried beneath those highways I don't know how an egret is going to see it, much less get to it.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0102A)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0105)
This seems to be the access to the tunnel out to the toll booths
. I did not descend. There were no signs telling me to stay away or inviting me in.

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0116)

Alexander Zuckermann Bicycle-Pedestrian Path (0119)
Returning, I followed the branch to the westerly side of Shellmound Street
.

Smallmound to 40th Street Viaduct Emeryville (3027)
On the viaduct facing east on 40th into Emeryville and Oakland
. Pedestrians on one side (north and east), bicycles only on the other side.

permalink | March 13, 2015 at 06:55 PM | Comments (1)

March 3, 2015

Not Missing It

Boston Virtual Imaging sent someone out with a drone and a camera to document the snow in Boston. They made a tour of some of the major tourist highlights in central Boston:

In order of appearance:

  • Charlestown (Bunker Hill)
  • Public Garden
  • Boston Common/Beacon Hill
  • Commonwealth Avenue/Back Bay
  • Fenway Park
  • Beacon Hill or maybe Charlestown again - hard to tell when you're up that close, although the unusual house one sees on the left will identify it for someone who knows Boston better than I - but I'm betting heavily on Beacon Hill
  • Charles River/The Esplanade (Hatch Shell)
  • Waterfront/Harbor Hotel/that thing that used to be an elevated highway which is now called the "Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway"

permalink | March 3, 2015 at 10:18 AM | Comments (1)

February 26, 2015

The Beauty Of Los Angeles

A good video of downtown L.A. shot with a drone that shows off a lot of the architectural detail and murals that people either can't see, don't see or take for granted.

permalink | February 26, 2015 at 02:35 PM | Comments (0)

February 20, 2015

Los Angeles City Hall Observation Deck

View Of US-101 From Los Angeles City Hall (2827)
A view of the US 101 linear parking lot
.

View Of LADWP From Los Angeles City Hall (2836)
West of City Hall is its equally tough sister agency, the LADWP
. You can see the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion cowering in front of the LADWP, a bit to the left.

View From Los Angeles City Hall (2829)

The Lindbergh Beacon (2833)

The Lindbergh Beacon

The beacon on top of the Los Angeles City Hall was turned on by President Calvin Coolidge from the White House during the City Hall dedication ceremonies April 26, 1928. The light was gratefully dedicated to Charles A. Lindbergh for his contribution to the advancement of aviation, and in commemoriation of man's first transatlantic solo flight from New York to Paris on May 20, 1927.

Press Photographer Association of greater Los Angeles.

View From Los Angeles City Hall - only the pink (2838)
In the park just west of City Hall, the park furniture is bright pink, as it should be
. You may need to click the image to get the full-res version in order to appreciate the pink highlights.

Los Angeles City Hall Elevator Interior (2816)
They've got some very nice elevators in LA City Hall
.

Jeff at Los Angeles City Hall (2839)
Jeff guards the door to make sure no trolls emerge
.

See more of these photos here.

permalink | February 20, 2015 at 12:43 PM | Comments (0)

January 23, 2015

Downtown Palm Springs

A couple of panoramas of the work being done west of Palm Canyon, east of the museum.
Downtown Palm Springs Rehab (2)

Downtown Palm Springs Rehab (1)

permalink | January 23, 2015 at 01:38 PM | Comments (0)

January 12, 2015

Ten Bridges Epic Walk

Yesterday I went on the Ten Bridges Epic walk, which crosses 10 of the bridges over the Los Angeles River. It came to about 14½ miles. Maps:

Ten Bridges Epic map from Google EarthTen Bridges Epic map from Garmin

Broadway Bridge
Broadway Bridge
.

Old Brick Lined Ditch Remnants (6405A)
This is a detail from the photo above
. These are the most recently unearthed remains of the Zanja Madre which were found in 2014. The brick probably dates from the 1880s, although the ditch itself goes back to the settling of Los Angeles. News story with photos here.

Sixth Street Bridge (6424)
Sixth Street Bridge which will be demolished this year
.

Ten Bridges Epic (6407A)

Ten Bridges Epic (6411)

Ten Bridges Epic (6433)
We try a shortcut along the river that is probably railroad property
. It turned out to be a dead end and we had to follow our steps back and loop around.

Ten Bridges Epic (6439)

Vernon Chamber of Commerce (6451)
The Vernon Chamber of Commerce
. I expected something a bit nicer.

Dames n Games (6441)

Famous Hockey Burger (6447)
The famous hockey burger
- which sets it apart from those ordinary hockey burgers that you never heard of.

The complete set of photos is here.

permalink | January 12, 2015 at 01:53 PM | Comments (0)

January 8, 2015

Oldest Palm Tree In L.A.

Oldest Palm Tree In Los Angeles (2670)
The oldest palm tree in Los Angeles is this one at the entrance to Exposition Park
(the Coliseum). That's the 110 in the background. Here's what the official plaque says.

This historic palm tree stood for more than twenty-five years at the entrance of the Southern Pacific station. At this railroad portal of the city it became a familiar landmark to many thousands of Los Angeles and southern California citizens and visitors from elsewhere, and was a mute witness to the growth of Los Angeles from a community of pueblo days to a great world metropolis of today. When construction of a new Southern Pacific station necessitated removal, under the auspices of the Los Angeles Examiner it was presented to the City of Los Angeles by the Southern Pacific Company. On September 5, 1914, it was placed here, where it and its sentimental associations will be permanently preserved.

Oldest Palm Tree In Los Angeles (2672)
Note the unusual line lengths used in the plaque.

This story on the KCET website says the tree came from an arroyo north of now-downtown L.A. and is more like 150 years old.

permalink | January 8, 2015 at 11:06 AM | Comments (0)