#3 South to North

Its been a little over a week since I last posted. I have to admit that all this rainfall in California has been putting a damper on my mood. My truck has a small leak in the camper shell and it has been getting my mattress wet which is becoming a serious issue. The more it rains the more of a problem I have! I am looking forward to things warming up and drying out so I can camp in my truck comfortably.

Last time we left off I was spending time with my buddy Bradley at his families home in San Diego. Big shoutout to the Rasmussen family for their hospitality and all the delicious meals! After parting ways with Bradley I went and spent a night with two of my friends from Vermont, April and Nina. Theres something about spending time with people from home in a totally distant location that is comforting and refreshing! On Friday, April and I decided to go on an adventure to an abandoned dam in north San Diego that I had heard about. I remembered that my good pal Eric ( @kushpush ) who is also a photographer and fellow adventurer just moved to San Diego so I hit him up and he met us out there.

The Dam was a very interesting place to shoot and I have to say it was one of the cooler spots I have explored as of late. As much as I love spooky abandoned hospitals and jails etc. the titanic scale of this abandonment combined with its massive arches filled me with “photographers glee” as id call it. I have always found big abandoned locations to be my favorite. They are particularly unique because somehow they have remained untouched after sitting and being an eye sore for so long. In this case the dam was holding an emergency water reserve so its obvious why it hasn’t been demolished, however some locations really make you wonder. It was refreshing having some adventure buddies with me! I love capturing people in unique places so it was a great opportunity to do so.

On Sunday morning I woke up and hit the road at about 10am to drive back up to Sonoma county so I could finish working on the RC track. I was hoping to shoot the Kern County Oil Fields and those Dr. Seuss lumps off the I-5 but after passing LA and getting through the mountains I must’ve spaced out because I ended up driving on the 99 North. The 99 ended up being a nice treat as I got to see a different part of central California. I stopped in Delano when I saw this really cool road with the American flag painted all along the side. After getting a few shots of that road I saw a small abandoned little rock crusher from an abandoned company. As I walked over to check it out it became pretty apparent somebody was squatting on the property. I took a few shots from the exterior and then heard a little dog start barking so I made my way back to my car and did my best to respect what little personal space the person had. After a quick gas fill up I got back on the road and continued my journey. Not an hour later I was driving on the 99 and saw a massive bonfire facing east in the distance. As I got closer I could see a farmer on a tractor pushing massive root balls into the fire….this was something I needed to get a shot of! That concluded my roadside adventures for the drive and I made my way back to Sonoma.

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The following two days was about 8+ hours of shoveling and track work. The start straight on the track is more then 6 feet wide and I had to dig about 1-2 feet down so overall I moved a shit ton of soil. Most of the dirt I dug was used for berms and jumps. I did some serious drainage work as well and built a French drain down one side of the track and have to do another one down the start straight as well. You can clearly see from the pics that the drainage only did so much but its due to the fact that its been flood weather. Once rain season ends the track will be dialed. We also rented a dirt tamper to pack the whole track so the cars will go super fast. Working with that thing was like wrestling a bull and it didn’t help that the track was muddy when I did it either….! Heres a few pics I snapped after lastnights rain.

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Yesterday I the rain stopped for a day and we had big beautiful puffy clouds all over Sonoma. I asked my buddy Zack if he wanted to come on a little adventure to the coast and we made our way to Dillon Beach. There are some very cool rock formations up on the ridgeline and Zack and I had some fun poking around them. I was amazed by how many faces we found in the rocks, the coolest one being the outstretched man!

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After the coastal adventure we secured some tickets to go see Bone Thugs N Harmony at the Mystic in Petaluma. I haven’t gone to a show in a while and it was a blast, sometimes hip hop shows are disappointing but the Thugs killed it! I found myself wishing I had my DSLR at the show, there were so many great photos I could have captured. I definitely will be trying to get more involved with concert photography in the future, it seems like a lot of fun and extremely rewarding! Until the next post~

 

-J.J

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