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Posts Tagged ‘landscape’

Under the 101 Bridge, copyright Ruth Moon 2009

This month, Ruth Moon takes us to visit “the unknown Waterfront” as part of her Eureka Discovery Walks.  She says:

Called the ‘Unknown’ Waterfront, because this stretch of the bay’s waterfront is actually not visible or accessible along much of the way, this walk features several stunning views and some interesting back trails. We’ll visit the only official section, other than the Boardwalk, of the Waterfront Walk that is envisioned to eventually span Eureka’s waterfront from north to south. We’ll see  what are some of the obstacles to making that vision a reality.

The walk starts at 9:30 AM this Saturday, November 21, in front of the Adorni Center (1011 Waterfront Drive, near the corner of L Street).

I really like Ruth’s tours.  They are free and very informative, and you get a bit of not-too-strenuous exercise.  Whether I can attend will depend on the weather, as I’m recovering from a cold and strep throat, but I hope to be there.

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Baxter-2-modifiedMy husband, a friend, and I spent a 3-day weekend at Baxter Environmental Camp in Humboldt Redwoods State Park.  We left Friday night and came back Monday afternoon.

Along with some of the other environmental camp sites like Hamilton Barn, also at Humboldt Redwoods State Park, and Dry Lagoon at Humboldt Lagoons State Park, this just made it onto my list of favourite camping spots in Northern California.

We had a wonderful time, complete privacy, and old-growth redwoods all around us.  We visited the Pioneer Cemetary and walked the Bull Creek Trail North (except for the last short eastern segment which was blocked by a fallen tree and forced us to turn around a bit early.)  We did some photography as well, though i don’t know whether I’ll have any good images.  And we had the most fantastic camp meals.

All this to say…

Don’t let the California State Parks close!!!

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On Friday night my husband and I went to to take a walk and do a little bird watching and photographing at the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge near Table Bluff. Even in overcast weather, it’s lovely to walk along Hookton Slough between the large heron and crane rookery at the foot of the bluff (great blue herons, black-crowned night herons, great egrets, white egrets, cattle egrets) and the cormorant colony nesting on Teal Island and beyond.

On Saturday, we went to the farmers market in Arcata, got lovely produce and meat (those strawberries from Fortuna were divine!), had lunch at Humboldt Brews. I’ve loved farmers markets since I was three; they feel so vivid and exciting.

Yesterday we went to see the new Pixar animation movie, Up! and were pleasantly surprised.  I really liked it, and yes, we both shed tears.  The movie is full of good quotable bits, clever observations, and little send-offs.

And under the full moon, we went to the Samoa Cookhouse to do a little night photography and light painting.  I hope a few shots will come out — but I won’t know until the film is developed.

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Humboldt County General Plan Update news: the next “town hall”-style meeting is planned for June 11; it’s a continuation of the April 30 meeting.

Land Use Element “Town Hall Style” Continued Planning Commission Meeting

Humboldt County Draft General Plan – Land Use Element

June 11, 2009

The Humboldt County Planning Commission will host a public workshop on the Draft Land Use Element beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 11, 2009 in the College of the Redwoods Forum Theater, 7351 Tompkins Hill Road, Eureka (Building #16 on the attached map). The workshop is the continuation of the April 30th Planning Commission meeting, and is presented as a forum for open dialogue between the Commissioners, planning staff, and the public. A format similar to a “town hall” meeting will be used to discuss the draft policies contained in the Land Use Element and the Plan Alternatives.

The purpose of this meeting is to receive public input on the Land Use Element of the Draft General Plan. This meeting follows two staff presentations to the Planning Commission on the Draft Land Use Element. During the April 16, 2009 Planning Commission meeting, the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts for Sections 4.2 (Growth Planning), 4.3 (Urban Lands), 4.4 (Rural Lands) and the Land Use Classifications were introduced to the Planning Commission. During the April 23, 2009 Planning Commission meeting, the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts for Sections 4.5 (Agricultural Resources), 4.6 (Forest Resources) and 4.7 (Public Lands) were presented. Archived streaming of these meetings is available on the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors website, http://county-internet/board/.

Background on the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts:

The Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts explain what the major issues are for these sections and list the goals, policies, standards, and implementation measures for Plan Alternatives A, B, C and D in one chart for comparison purposes. Copies are available on the GPU website at www.planupdate.org and will also be available for viewing at the Humboldt County Library (all branches), Kinkos and the Community Development Services Department front counter. Also available is a “Users Guide” that explains the format of the charts and how they will be used by the decision makers in their deliberation process for ultimately adopting a new General Plan for the County.

For further information, or to be placed on the email list to receive notices of workshops, please contact Martha Spencer by email at mspencer@co.humboldt.ca.us or by telephone at (707) 268-3704 or Tom Hofweber at 268-3738.

Recap of the four alternatives:

  • Plan Alternative A accommodates growth by promoting infill and by focusing growth in urban areas with adequate services. The alternative increases protection of resource production lands, and is considered the “environmentally superior” alternative. This alternative is generally more prescriptive, and has more detailed and specific policy sets associated with it.
  • Plan Alternative B (Proposed Plan) balances protection of resource lands with the need for residential development through focused development, appropriate urban expansion, and incentive-based clustering policies to encourage conservation of resource production lands.
  • Plan Alternative C is a higher growth and less regulatory alternative providing additional residential capacity. This alternative, particularly in rural areas, increases the amount of land planned for residential estate and rural residential uses. This alternative is generally less prescriptive, and has policy language that is more flexible.
  • Plan Alternative D — the No Action Alternative — is the existing 1984 Framework Plan.

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Google Earth iconI’ve mentioned several times things I love about Google Earth. I use it a lot for my work, but I also find it to be a lot of fun. Today, I’d like to share some interesting resources and tips on more geographic information about local features that can be explored in Google Earth. Google Earth is every Internet user’s gateway to geographic information system (GIS) information.

Topographic maps can be overlaid right on top of Google Earth so you can compare the aerial view and the map.  This layer was kindly reprojected, stitched,  and made available by3DSolar.

The National Wetland Inventory compiled by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is a key reference in conducting a lot of environmental studies, and is now available in a Google Earth projection.  Very handy for first-cut approach to a site, even though you still need field verification.

The Earthquake Hazards Program offered by the U.S. Geological Survey compiles several different and interesting links relevant to earthquake and geological hazards.

Air Quality Index maps from U.S. EPA AIRNow let you explore current, recent, and real-time air quality throughout the U.S.

MapCruizin is a local firm that gathers several free resources for Google Earth (and other geographic applications), including a map of California watersheds; a series of visualizations of U.S. EPA information on toxics and pollution; projections of the effects of global warming and climate change; and links to a collection of tools to do more with Google Earth, like use GIS data, draw new shapes, calculate areas, etc.

Another local initiative, Green Wheels, compiled a layer showing the Humboldt Bay trail network, both existing and planned.

Sea level rise scenarios from Mark Mulligan at the King’s College of London allow you to try various inundation scenarios based on the projected rise of sea level, and to compare the accuracy of the model for your area by checking it against current conditions.

Naturally, the Google Earth Gallery offers a multitude of other interesting or useful layers.

Links of interest:

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Humboldt County General Plan Update news: notice received Monday from the Planning Division of Humboldt County Community Development Services:

Housing Element “Town Hall Style” Planning Commission Meeting

Humboldt County Draft General Plan — Land Use Element

April 30, 2009

The Humboldt County Planning Commission will host an informal public workshop on the Draft Land Use Element beginning at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 30, 2009 in the Board of Supervisors chambers, Humboldt County Courthouse, Eureka. The workshop is intended to provide a forum for an open dialogue between the Commissioners, planning staff, and the public. A format similar to a “town hall” meeting will be used to discuss the draft policies contained in the Land Use Element and the Plan Alternatives.

This meeting follows two staff presentations to the Planning Commission on the Draft Land Use Element. During the April 16, 2009 Planning Commission meeting, the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts for Sections 4.2 (Growth Planning), 4.3 (Urban Lands), 4.4 (Rural Lands) and the Land Use Classifications were introduced to the Planning Commission. During the April 23, 2009 Planning Commission meeting, the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts for Sections 4.5 (Agricultural Resources), 4.6 (Forest Resources) and 4.7 (Public Lands)were presented. This upcoming meeting is open to discussion of all the proposed policies and plan alternatives for the Draft Land Use Element.

Background on the Land Use Element and Key Issues:

The Land Use Element provides for the distribution, location and extent of uses of land for housing, business, industry, natural resources, open space, recreation, and other uses. It guides decision makers, planners, and the general public in fulfilling the ultimate pattern and character of development within the unincorporated areas of the county. The policies of the proposed Plan represent a legislated balance between the individual rights of property owners and the health, safety, and welfare needs of the community.

Background on the Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts:

The Plan Alternatives – Key Issues and Comparison Charts explain what the major issues are for these sections and list the goals, policies, standards, and implementation measures for Plan Alternatives A, B, C and D in one chart for comparison purposes. Copies are available on the GPU website at www.planupdate.org and will also be available for viewing at the Humboldt County Library (all branches), Kinkos and the Community Development Services Department front counter. Also available is a “Users Guide” that explains the format of the charts and how they will be used by the decision makers in their deliberation process for ultimately adopting a new General Plan for the County.

For further information, or to be placed on the email list to receive notices of workshops, please contact Martha Spencer by email at mspencer@co.humboldt.ca.us or by telephone at (707) 268-3704 or Tom Hofweber at 268-3738.

Recap of the four alternatives:

  • Plan Alternative A accommodates growth by promoting infill and by focusing growth in urban areas with adequate services. The alternative increases protection of resource production lands, and is considered the “environmentally superior” alternative. This alternative is generally more prescriptive, and has more detailed and specific policy sets associated with it.
  • Plan Alternative B (Proposed Plan) balances protection of resource lands with the need for residential development through focused development, appropriate urban expansion, and incentive-based clustering policies to encourage conservation of resource production lands.
  • Plan Alternative C is a higher growth and less regulatory alternative providing additional residential capacity. This alternative, particularly in rural areas, increases the amount of land planned for residential estate and rural residential uses. This alternative is generally less prescriptive, and has policy language that is more flexible.
  • Plan Alternative D — the No Action Alternative — is the existing 1984 Framework Plan.

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Bay Rhythym, by Jay BrownYesterday, my husband and I spent the afternoon at the Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary for a little photography and a little bird-watching. We stopped at the Arcata Marsh Interpretive Center and discovered that artist Jay Brown was exhibiting some of his works there and was holding an Artist’s Reception.

We had a chance to look at the Works on Paper exhibit and have an excellent chat with Mr. Brown. Several pieces showed roughly the same landscape in completely different weather and lighting conditions; Mr. Brown says that’s the view he gets from his home in Manila.

Mr. Brown uses several different media for his art, such as watercolours, gouache, acrylic, pen, pencils, and a variety of paper types and textures. He also frames his paintings himself. He has a fascination for interesting cloud formation and lighting effects. I really loved the exhibit, and my two favourite pieces were “Invasion” and “Minus Tide Plus Fog”.

Go enjoy the exhibit!

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