Friday, March 30, 2007

It's Happening

The upgrading of underground utilities and the refurbishing and refinishing of North Franklin has commenced.

Above, some of the equipment being warmed up just prior to the 7:00 AM starting bell.

The view of Franklin Street, looking south, from Redwood Avenue to Alder Street.

Puriety Market is just past the equipment parked on the left and our Post Office is located to the right, just beyond the parked truck. Everyone is stired up and inconvienced right now but it will be over soon and the potholes of Franklin Street will be a thing of the past.

For a while.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Daylight's a coming!

My friend Michel said she is looking forward to my study of the gates and fences of Fort Bragg.

So am I but it is still a bit early for handheld photography! The above gate was photographed at 6:20 this morning.

This one about ten minutes later. As you can see, there is hope in the sky!

The sun actually cleared the coastal hills at 7:15 AM.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Rainy Day

I’m thrilled to have one of my Walking Fort Bragg “oddities” accepted into a nationally famous museum. All I can say is, “It’s about time”!!

I have noticed the aerial poetry in our Fort Bragg skies made by power, phone and cable lines. The wiring also affords wonderful perches for our local birds.

But, like anything else, too much of a good thing can cause less than inspiring results.


As you can see, when my morning walk gets rained out I have way too much time to play around on my computer. The museum image was generated using an online program at:

The “too much of a good thing” photo is from a very interesting blog at:

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Street Graffiti

Many times, as I head out for my early morning walk, I wonder what will catch my eye. Sometimes nothing does and I think I am going to be skunked. This morning was like that until towards the very end when I was walking towards home on Franklin Street and happened upon these marks.
I know the northern half of Franklin is going to be repaved like the southern half was last year. The North/South demarcation is Oak Street.
These marks are Art to me but I know they indicate a lot of planning and searching and they generate concern in shop owners.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Easter Already?

I don't know that I have ever seen outdoor Easter light decorations before but, there they are!
I also noticed a new set of wheels this morning. The above photo was taken May 12th, 2006 at 6:05 AM.
This photo was taken today, March 24th, 2007 at 6:30 AM. I have never seen this car move but the wheels sure are nice!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Okay. Okay. So that wasn’t a spaceship full of Fence-Eaters.
Actually the sewer system is being upgraded. I checked yesterday and discovered the “Spaceship” was going to be buried at 2:00 PM so I made a point of being there for the occasion.
I learned that in the process of digging the hole an old, wire wrapped, wooden water main was intercepted. The backhoe operator thought it dated back to 1870 but if you go check this 1890 photo you can see Laurel Street coming to an end and Harrison didn’t exist. The “Spaceship” was being buried two and a half blocks even further east of Harrison between Cory and Harold!

Unfortunately the piece of wooden pipe was smashed but you can see the wood and wire wrapping.

This morning there was only mute evidence of the burial of the Alien Spaceship!

Monday, March 19, 2007


This morning I happened upon this Spaceship parked near the corner of Harold and Laurel. I approached it carefully and discovered it was cool to the touch. I estimate it came down through the atmosphere sometime during the midnight hours. The top hatch was missing and fortunately no aliens remained inside. I continued my walk and soon discovered the aliens had been on a rampage!
Near Chestnut and Park I spotted my first evidence.
Near Laurel and McPherson the aliens had at least made a nice little pile out of the broken fence pieces.
On Main, north of Pine, the aliens had totally consumed the fence leading me to think they were sampling fences and found this one to their liking.

As you can see, repairs to the building are already in place and Humans have erected stout metal posts to ward off future attacks. Obviously some sort of time warp is involved as this predates the landing!
Makes me wonder if distant galaxies are monitoring this blog? Did “THEY” notice my interest in documenting fences and gates?

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Friday, March 16, 2007

Bread Run

I did a quick walk to Safeway this morning. I needed a loaf of bread. Turns out it is 1.92 miles round trip and I averaged 3.4 mph (according to my GPS).

Along the way I noticed this Neon sign inside the “Tip Top Lounge”. Boonville is a small town 48 miles southeast of Fort Bragg and it is nice to see Anderson Valley Brewing Company has their own Neon sign. There are probably a couple million Budweiser neon signs in existence but I bet there are not a lot of neon "Boonville Beer" signs out there.

Here is a photo I took last August of the Tip Top Lounge.

On my way back from Safeway I spotted this. The store sells carpeting and lamps. I haven’t the foggiest what this is all about but, I had to take a picture!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Gates are coming

When it gets lighter out I plan to start documenting gates and fences. There are quite a variety around Fort Bragg.

For instance. This gate is in front of a house hidden behind high shrubbery towards the southern end of Harold Street where Harold Street necks down to a narrow one way street.

I think the property preceded Harold Street and the original property owners would not allow an easement for Harold Street to continue past them the same width as it is from Chestnut, all the 9 blocks to Cotton Auditorium. Anyone know?

Here’s another neon sign, at the corner of Harold and Oak, that needed to be added to my Neon Sign collection.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Deja Vu

I went for a walk this morning with two purposes in mind, the first, to see what Daylight Savings Time had done to us. You might compare this photo, taken at 6:44 AM this morning with yesterday’s photo also taken at 6:44 AM.

The second reason is because the other day I was driving out Highway 20 and stopped to take some photos of Van Peer’s boatworks. I wanted to post the photos but I had not walked to that location. So, this morning I walked (4.5 miles round trip) and took this photo. The following two photos were taken a few days ago from my vehicle.

Here is what I found on the web about Van Peer’s boatyard and I include it here because a lot of us locals see it but never know any more than what we see:

Calif. yard makes a comeback (Published 2006)

Since it opened in 1973, Van Peer Boatworks was known for building quality steel boats for fishermen from California to Alaska, boats like the Spiky Lady, Reality, Spectra and Island Pride — 28 in all, with the last one being the 59-foot Stella. That was before Chris Van Peer closed down his boatyard on Highway 20 in Fort Bragg, Calif., five years ago.

Now Van Peer is back. Actually, the boatyard has been open for more than a year, and this past February, the Jes An, a 63' x 24' Dungeness crabber was launched for local fisherman Tim Estes. Asked why he started building steel boats again, Van Peer says he knew Estes, and Estes asked him to build him a new boat. He decided to go ahead with the project, and now he’s on his second crabber.

In early May, Van Peer was in his boatyard, waiting for a truckload of computer-cut steel to arrive so he could start the next boat. One reason work didn’t start as soon as the Jes An was completed is because of the slow process getting steel from the mill, Van Peer says.

The new boat will be identical to the Jes An. The boat’s owner, Dennis Sturgell of Hammond, Ore., and Estes are friends, and they fish in the same area. So when Estes starting thinking about having his boat built, he and Sturgell got together and figured it would be cheaper to build two identical boats.

Thus they got the same designer, Jensen Maritime Consultants in Seattle; the same engine, 640-hp Cummins KTA19-M3; the same generators, two 120-kW John Deeres; the same 5-inch shafting, and so on, down to stainless-steel plating.

Both boats will have two stainless-steel-lined insulated fish holds. The larger one is 2,120 cubic feet, and the smaller is 1,480 cubic feet. Behind the two fish holds is a 320-cubic-foot bait tank. The holds can be tanked down for crabbing, but for albacore fishing, they will use chilled seawater and spray brine.

The boats have stainless-steel guards and cap rails. The willingness to use stainless steel is one thing Van Peer notices after being out of the business for five years. “Anything that gets any wear at all is stainless steel,” he says.

Since Van Peer has been back in business, fishermen have been calling from as far away as Alaska to talk about having a boat built.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

6:44 AM

6:44 AM Saturday, March 10th and the sun just breaks over the coastal hills.
Tomorrow at 6:44 AM it is going to be a whole different story. Spring Ahead!! Oh Boy!

Friday, March 9, 2007


My wife accuses me of being anthropomorphic but hey...

It looks like things are getting pretty cozy to me! (That's two birds on the pole. NOT one bird yawning!!

Meanwhile, down here in Fort Bragg, there were a lot of folks who kept their milk cow and chickens “out back” in the "good old days. Walking around I have spotted a few examples.

This summer I plan to walk the alleys of Fort Bragg where lots of little sheds and coops are still visible.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007


Spring starts in two weeks but already these Ravens are making amorous moves while standing on a High Voltage cross beam!! (Tricky business!!)
Just by looking at them you can tell what's going on! And isn't it amazing how "guy like" the guy looks and how indifferent the female seems!

If you can't tell by looking, it is the female that makes that “knocking on wood” sound.

I walked through the hospital grounds this morning and discovered this.

It is a very nice enclosed garden. If you are in need of rejuvenation and renewal, hopefully you have a key.
I know. I know. Patient only but…

And I couldn’t pass these without taking their photos!

Monday, March 5, 2007

Back on Track

Monday morning and I’m walking Fort Bragg again. I got a late start and wasn’t out the door until 6:15 AM. Gravity seemed especially strong!

After seeing quite a bit of Berkeley last week I have come to appreciate how easy I have it compared to Jen at Walking Berkeley. Boy oh boy are there some hills in Berkeley!

Another observation. How nice and light it is getting between 6:00 and 7:00 AM (my preferred walking time) and the realization I am going to be soon slammed back into darkness when Daylight Savings Time arrives less than a week from now.

I discovered another manhole cover “misalignment” (top photo) and my eighth “post transfer box”. I am told these transfer boxes are still used, occasionally.

As you have probably noticed, I prefer the simpler life!! The "city" was fun but...

Sunday, March 4, 2007

I'm Back

As you can see by the above photo I have not been in Fort Bragg.

A friend was going to the “Bay Area” for some medical tests. He was going for a week and I offered to tag along as company. He and his wife have a second home in the Richmond Marina Bay area so we were all set for accommodations.

During this past week I got to ride the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) system from the Richmond/Berkeley station to the San Francisco Embarcadero Area.

From there we used the MUNI bus system up to the hospital. And back.

The days we were not involved going to the hospital we paddled Richmond Bay in kayaks.

And, fellow readers, almost every morning I did walk the walking and biking path alongside Richmond Bay.

It was all very interesting but I am glad to be back
Walking Fort Bragg again.