Greetings. As you may have noticed, I have changed the header image for the blog from a big block o’ red to a photo snippet that I hope you enjoy as much as I do. I took this one (the uncropped version) near Montana de Oro State Park near San Luis Obispo, CA. The park name means “Mountain of Gold”, though it was named for the wildflowers in the spring/summer, not the metal. The exact location of this gone-by dandelion was just south along the coast from the state park in some land owned by Pacific Gas and Electric. There are trails and lovely bits of coastline, which you can wander along for the price of signing in at the little gate and avoiding the couple dozen cattle that graze there.
You might wonder why PG&E owns the land. The answer seems to be that its part of the piece of land along the central coast of California that contains the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant. That consists of two ~1 gigawatt reactors, so it’s a big one. Interesting tangential detail: Google Maps will bring up its “approximate” location for you and shows an outdated satellite image of the spot (“Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power”), but Bing Maps, i.e. Microsoft, simply says it can’t find any such place. They probably also both send automated logs of my searches and IP address to the FBI. Good times.
Anyway, nice place (San Luis Obispo, the state park, and the PG&E land). Go visit if you’ve got the opportunity.