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ISHILOGO.JPG, 3 kB My favorite places
Ishi Country and the Ponderosa Way
and the Tuscan Ridge
Cohasset, Ca

20080403ROCKBEN.JPG, 109 kB
My brother Ben and I set out to travel Ponderosa Way.
The trip started in Cohasset, heading north on Cohasset Rd.
and would end in Red Bluff on Hwy 36.
Also known as Ishi country.
Ben has a 2500 Dodge diesel. The truck sets high off the ground for good ground clearance, necessary for logs and rocks.

The trip took 10 hours. All roads, that you are supposed to be on, are passable but rough. Basically, stay on or near Ponderosa Way. Otherwise, you are lost, and the road will probably get even worse. You should look at a forestry map and backtack. This trip is worth every darn hardship. Really is!

This is terrain past the Heliport...
Nothing spectacular. Quite normal.

We will explore this territory
Originally, we were going to explore this territory from north to south. But from South to North we could have fresh mocha frappes. So with delicious mochas in hand we started out from south to north.

The area is full of little logging roads. If they all look like good choices, you should look at a forestry map.
Sooner is better than later.
BANASTAR.gif, 1.5kB Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
Matthew 18:3
In beautiful country like this, and with two brothers having fun, you are not really EVER lost. But you will have to be prepared to forsake family, friends, and if lost, the Monday job.
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Indian Warrior
The sky was turning a dark overcast in parts, with fleeting moments of gleaming sun gloriously coming through. Just as the sky was alive with contrast, these bright red plants also were seen. They, when lit by the sun, dramatically punctuate the greens and browns. They really stand out. These colorful plants are sometimes in groupings and sometimes quite alone.

BANAST15.gif Tree of Life
DEERBRIDBEN20080403.JPG, 183 kB
DeerCreek bridge
Deer Creek
In Deer Creek Canyon, we are only into our trip an hour and half. And already we are treated to this. The water is ice cold and clear. Later rivers will not be this clear and each will have a unique color, of greys, greens, and blues.

We had picked up a couple of turkey sandwiches at Subways. And this river was the perfect place for lunch. However, we could not stand to set down and eat. So we paced back and forth across the bridge, eating all the while, examining every tie and beam. At times eating seemed a real handicap. We were in the moment; with eating and talking with full mouths, pointing, pondering, and finally, running down to the beckoning river. I don't remember what happened to the sandwiches, and I don't care. To any one else, we were some kind of grown up children in our own paradise. But we knew that we were quite normal brothers, given the circumstances.

Black Rock
We were past the Heliport, And past DeerCreek. We could see BlackRock in the distance...
The road that we wanted would go along the edge of this rock.
Don't know what this means...
I found this rock...
It looks like a map...

I do not have a clue as to what it means. Perhaps time: As in days of travel. The holes are so round as if another color blob was there. It is so strange. I don't even remember where I picked this rock up. It just magically appeared in my pocket. So strange!

Ishi Shrine
When you read about the massacres and the killing parties, then you clearly can see the primitive nature of the whites. The whites continued to reproduce unchecked. While the native people here were exterminated. There are plaques in the area relating the notion that barbaric peoples have an unfortunate need to dominate. Humanity suffers. Here, the affliction is chiseled in stone for history to see. But the offspring of the early barbaric white ones are still in the area evidenced by much vandalism. Several wooden display boards are destroyed. The white ones seem to destroy everything: not just the natural world and peoples, but also display boards.

Here is some more of Ishi's world...
This squirl must have been some sort of a building contractor.
And in Ishi's time, you did not need a licence to do anything. I had the camera stabilizer turned on, but still could not stop the motion. Otherwise that could have been a great picture - of some one actually doing work.

This altitude is about 4500 feet: Scenic and breathtaking.

20080403SPIREBEN.JPG, 118 kB
Brother Ben, beside one of many lava pillars, in a calmed down moment, as we figure we are throughly lost.
"Lost": as in referance to other things.
In this area, a fleeting feeling that, in time, vanishes on it's own.

20080403MONKEYF.JPG, 136 kB
Monkey Face
BANAST15.gif Tree of Life
As we were driving along, I spotted this plant. I jumped out of a moving truck. No matter what, I would not let this plant get away. I hit the ground, peddling hard, And with risk of hurting myself. ...All just to ask my brother what this thing was.

With me missing from the passenger seat of the truck, brother Ben slammed on the breaks. From down the road I could see that Ben got the truck stopped. He ran back to me, more out of breath than I, and shouted that this plant was a Monkey Face! I was not disappointed: he KNEW the name! He explained: The inside of the flower can move to deliberately place pollen on the back of a bee. Ben too was excited that I had spotted this pretty little plant.
(After my sudden exit, he did not ask how I was, but he is still my brother.)
BANAST15.gif Tree of Life

The sun came out just so I could get a sun highlighted picture of BlackRock. We have been traveling for hours with this mammoth "rock" in the distant, coming in and out of view. We are finally about a mile from this thing, and it is huge. The river below splits into two rivers to flow around this "mini mountain".

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal,
flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb,
down the middle of the great street of the city.
On each side of the river stood the tree of life

Revelation 22:1
You can not see the river in the picture because of the great distance, but it is there at the base of this rock. And if you have not gotten TOO lost, you will later cross it. Sorry, I don't know the name of it. There was not enough time to take notes.

I remember using that same excuse in school: "not enough time". That excuse has never really worked for me.

The trees seem unconcerned growing on pure rock. How can they do that? This wild country produces some awesome sites.

We are blessed with gentle rain and warm sun. By the way, bring plenty of water. Or you will be holding your mouth open and looking up to the sky. Although, this is not bad either; Rain tastes sweet. ...Wish there was more of it.

As we continue to head north, the terrain looks as if it NEVER gets any precipitation. There are few trees. It appears to be a high desert platea.

Huge rock faces, all over the place. Ben is getting excited at these majestic sites. With both our heads totally out of the windows, I constantly have to remind my brother Ben that he is driving. And It seems the truck is dangerously in motion every time we see something.

We are brothers that Dad, at one time, sat down and tried to teach us patience. It never really worked. I always sat on my hands and faked it.
(Nowadays, I would probably be put on medication.)

The road travels under some dangerous rocks. Or should I say "skyscrapers", a few hundred feet tall! There are smaller pieces of rock 50 feet long and 15 feet wide that hang out from the rock face. These things are the size of busses. And, from appearances, you will swear the rocks are ready to fall away. Actually, the tallis fields littered underneath, testify to this fate. So our fear is well founded, and Ben's truck could be the next victim. Wrong time, wrong place! These rock sections weigh many tons and are precariously poised hundreds of feet - straight overhead. Our heads! Not many people are going to be able to see this! Awesome...

Wish I had a sandwich, I think my brother ate mine.

DUDLEYA20080403.JPG, 215 kB
My brother Ben excitedly pointed out several of these spectacular dudleyas. I mean to tell you these things are absolutely spectacular. Ben is almost unconsolable. (He gets like that.) They grow were there is no dirt. They somehow ancor themselves in crevasses. Some were over our heads, straight up in the cliff face, safely off-limits from people.
BANAST15.gif Tree of Life
RULERMAR.GIF, 1 kB We exited unto Hwy 36 and the trip was over. But we talked of a return trip where we had more time to explore, instead of just managing to ride in a truck along an exhausting road. In a sense, I wanted to put on moccasins and "feel" and "taste"; to honor and experience the native peoples of long ago.

If I haven't thanked you on the phone:
Thank you, my brother Ben.