Friday, September 26, 2014

Unsung Heroes of Santa Clara County Parks


                                      Jeremy saying HI to everyone.

Yes these guys are my heroes.  Even though we work as a team, they do a lot of extra things for me that aren’t in their job description.

One of the main things that they do is to keep the trash under control.  Emptying the animal safe trash receptacles is a daily occurrence,  sometimes several times a day on busy weekends and holidays.  It’s one of the things that I can’t do because those covers are really heavy.


                    Danny is our seasonal worker and retires this weekend.

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Here Ruben and Jeremy are hanging bee catchers.  That’s a pheromone that they put into the bottom to attract the bees.  The bees can be very aggressive when bits of meat are left in or on the fire rings.

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That’s Ruben restocking the breezeway (the area between the two restrooms) and Jeremy working in the pump house. They keep the spring fed water in the park safe to drink.

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                       Our maintenance guys are also are snake wranglers. 


They do all kinds of ground work too.  Above is a tree branch that fell and took out a smaller tree,  There were two campsites that were affected and couldn’t be used for several days until they were able to remove all the branches.  In the meantime the deer took advantage of the succulent leaves.

IMG_2966 IMG_2963 IMG_3089   More ground work.  They seem to be mowing for  grass a lot, especially in the morning when it is cooler.  They have two types of mowers, one that works like smaller circular yard power mowers and the one pictured above (the reel is like a hand push mower) that when used, has to have someone in the truck to watch for fire producing sparks.

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Then there’s the tasks that are required because of the stupidity of some segments of the general public.  (subjects for rants that I won’t subject you to)

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Lately, we have had several water line breaks.  Above Ruben and Jeremy are working on one in the Equestrian CG.  It was really hot that day.  Check out the big hats.  That’s Bruce’s hand showing me how to apply decals that would go on the trash receptacles.

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It’ not always work, we have fun too.  On the left is the impromptu Birthday Party for my 70th.  Yesterday we had a Pot Luck before the monthly Staff Meeting that included the people from Ed Levin County Park and a couple of people from Corporate.  In the center is Danny grilling a Tri-Tip and on the right is Bruce frying breaded Abalone.


There are a lot of other things that they do throughout the 10,000 acre park, not only here in the CG, but out on the trails and around the lakes.  I certainly appreciate all that they do.  THANK YOU to Bruce, Ruben, Jeremy and Danny.

Next time you see a maintenance person in a  park or resort, tell them thanks.  They all work hard.

Thanks for visiting


When Mom is working and the guys come by, they always come over and say hello.  I like them too.

Susan and Angel

Monday, September 15, 2014

Short Timing It


Morning sky at J D Grant County Park looking east towards Lick’s Observatory on Mt Hamilton,

It will be just a little over a month before I leave this park.  So, I thought that I would head over to Grant Lake to pick up litter and see if I could get some more pictures of wildlife.

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These are of a large group of turkey vultures just sitting there with their wings spread

out, maybe trying to cool off (it was hot), and a couple in flight.


They were in the field across from the entrance to the Park.  those two specks to the right are a couple of bicyclists that frequent Hwy 130, especially on Saturday mornings.

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There weren’t that many birds on the lake, just a couple of herons and a few ducks.


Not wildlife here, Just a dad teaching his boys how to fish.

From Grant Lake, I decided to head over to McCrery Lake.  I hadn’t been there before, so I checked for litter there too. 

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This is the entire lake, with the drought, it looks like the water is down 6 to 8 feet.  The only wildlife that I saw was a blue heron that took off and squawked a lot as well as a lot of frogs and bugs.

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I’m not sure what the house is for.  It’s on the far side of the lake.

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On our way back home we passed the Equestrian CG just as these riders were heading out.  I asked if I could take pictures, so here are a couple.  The little bitty face flies are aggravating.  The lady in pink came up with this netting to keep them out of her horse’s eyes.  Ingenious!  I should have something like that for Angel.  They really bother her.

It sure is slowing down in the CG. There were maybe only 10 reservations and a few last minute drive-ins for the entire weekend. 

It’s funny how firewood sales are, sometimes I don’t sell any and then like last weekend there was a run on it.  I only had a few boxes, so Ranger Brian brought me eight boxes on Friday night and by Saturday night I had only 1 left.  So this afternoon I loaded up the cart and filled the wood locker.  So far this next weekend there are only 6 reservations and one Boy Scout Troop coming, another slow week.

There’s not much happening, so I should be able to start getting ready for my next move.  I hope that whoever is traveling to their new locations have safe travels.

Thanks for visiting


I think that those were really big funny looking dogs that people were on.

Susan and Angel

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Rubbish Rant, Race and Other Stuff


This is what I usually see when I get back from my morning round of RR cleaning.  This morning was a little hazy.  I liked the way that the trees are silhouetted with the sun coming up behind Lick Observatory.

However, ( Warning!!!!!  Here comes a short Rant.)   

Below is a picture of what I found when I rounded a curve in the road in one of the campsites.  The night before, someone dumped all this trash.  For the life of me, it is hard to understand why anyone would be so disrespectful of a beautiful public campground.  I know that there is a charge to take things to the public landfill, but really why go out of your way to come into the park to do it.  It’s just offensive!  Bruce, Maintenance supervisor tells me that sometimes it is cultural.  When asked why they do it some say “ My grandfather did it, my dad did it and I do it.”  It’s about time that someone should break the cycle and dispose of rubbish properly. 


Enough said!    Change of subject.

While cleaning the RR’s I found this Leopard  If it looks strange, it’s because it’s head got squashed between the door and door jam.  Just another CG casualty. 


Every now and again we get the large four legged camper.  This horse was grazing in the pasture early in the morning.  His owner allowed me to take pictures and gave her some extra feed so that I could capture her blue eye.  She has one blue and one brown.


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I really like this picture with the morning sun.


These were taken on Saturday morning.  The rest of the morning was spent taking pictures of the race event. This one wasn’t a fund raiser, but of a local group that does races and hikes all over the bay area.  Someone said that there is one somewhere every other weekend.  For this one they expected 3 or 4 hundred participants, nowhere near the last mud run.  They too do it every year here in the park.            

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The cars just kept on coming in

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and the racers kept on running.

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Some of the racers came in Friday night to camp before the race and a few of the stayed until Sunday, however the CG was nowhere near full this weekend.  Since Labor Day weekend, things are slowing down a lot.

Now is when maintenance starts their various projects.  A week ago a water pipe broke near the RR by me, so there is no water below the RR.  Quite a few campers have requested to change sites closer to water and fortunately we were able to accommodate them.  This is Ruben and Jeremy working on the water source in the equestrian CG.  It was really hot.  I really appreciate these guys.


I hope that you all are having a great week.

Thanks for visiting


Susan and Angel