PhotoStory Friday: An Autumn Saturday

Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek.

Matthew is taking a photography class, so a couple of weeks ago, we decided to drive him up to the foothills to snap some pictures. We went to Jackson, had lunch, and drove around a bit so that he could get some scenic shots. We decided to take Highway 104 home, through Ione and the countryside, eventually connecting with Highway 99 about eight miles north of Lodi.

It was such a beautiful day. The hills looked like the photos you find on postcards.  Look at this view of a vineyard. The clouds look like I Photoshopped them into the picture, but I didn’t. All of these photos are completely unretouched.

This shot is from across the road.

We took a left turn and headed south on a local road.  This shot is looking back toward the highway.

Looking west, you see the entrance to Rancho Seco Park. Looks inviting, doesn’t it?

This is what you find across the road from those soft, rolling hills covered with vineyards.  What a contrast!

Rancho Seco used to be a nuclear power generating plant. It was decommissioned by the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) in 1989 after Sacramento County voters became the first to approve taking a functioning nuclear power plant offline.

The park is really lovely. There is a lake, beach, picnic area, and seven-mile nature trail.  They have fishing tournaments and other outdoor events there.  Before the plant went off-line, we used to sail my friends’ Hobie Cat there . . . in the shade of the reactors. 

The towers are empty. (I guess that’s why you can drive right up to them.)  But they can be seen for miles and are a familiar part of the Northern California landscape.

Solar energy is generated on the site now. You can watch a video about it here.


  1. Wow! That is some beautiful sky you two captured!!! What great shots!!

    So glad you joined us for PSF this week!!

    Cecily R´s most recent post: Photo Story Friday and Gracie’s Contribution

  2. Wow, what beautiful captures..

    Becky´s most recent post: GASp Prices…

  3. WOW! Those photos are amazing!

    Amanda´s most recent post: Photostory Friday – Alma Park Zoo

  4. love the puffy clouds!

  5. What a great drive. I enjoyed learning about the empty towers, thank goodness for solar energy. But I agree it would be neat to drive right up to them and photograph. Great pictures, I hope the class is going well.

    killlashandra´s most recent post: Photostory Friday – A Reminder

  6. These are some wonderful photos. Makes me want to visit your part of the world.

    Heather´s most recent post: PSF: "Quick, Lets Run From Mom Before She Takes Our Picture!"

  7. It looks like a truly beautiful drive. Great photos!

    lori´s most recent post: PSF Biggest Ranger Fan EVER!

  8. What a clear day you had! Great pictures. Didn’t it feal weird driving up to the towers?

    Jerry´s most recent post: Socialism?

  9. Great photos! Amazing views. Guess the classes are paying off! 😀

    Lisa´s most recent post: Yes, we have a new kitchen floor. Don’t tell my parents

  10. the sky is truly amazing. what a gorgeous day!

    deb´s most recent post: Island Treasures

  11. Those clouds ARE amazing.
    Nicely done.

    Chris´s most recent post: Photostory Friday: Chasing the Moment

  12. Love those! I really like the one that says it was taken from across the road; the clouds look like polka dots in the sky.

    Amber´s most recent post: MEN….

  13. Kelli@GohnCrazy says:

    The pictures of the clouds are just awesome!

    Kelli@GohnCrazy´s most recent post: Fall Coat for K-Girl

  14. The clouds look like big cotton balls! Great photos! The stacks are interesting.

    Carrie Keiser´s most recent post: Foto-story Friday #21– Cowpie trails

  15. Those pics almost look like desktop backgrounds for Windows. I love it. Thanks for sharing.

  16. What a nice views..Than ks for sharing those picture..I really enjoy viewing it..