Snapshots from Palomar

PalomarThank you all so much for your sweet comments this week! We are in San Diego for the next few days, but I should be back to regularly scheduled (comment-answering!) programming on Monday. In the meantime, here is some more Palomar fun. When I went to the library last week to get a book on San Diego, I saw this slim little volume right next to the San Diego books. It’s called Palomar: From Tepee to Telescope, and, let me tell you, it is a historical wonder. It was published in 1937, eleven years before the telescope saw first light. It was, as far as I can tell, a WPA project to encourage tourism to the mountain’s campsites, provide information about the history and natural features of the region, and get people pumped about the telescope. It is completely awesome.

PalomarIt has tons of information on the developments leading up to the building of the telescope, including the building of roads. Quite a lot of people used to live on the mountain, and they apparently used to tie trees to the backs of their cars to serve as brakes on the way down. I am not making this up.

PalomarAlso, mountain lions! There are not many on the mountain today, but they do appear from time to time. I read this whole marvelous book yesterday afternoon while Eric was calibrating the telescope, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I also heartily appreciated the nature guide at the back, which allowed me to identify the band-tailed pigeons, quail, and tree squirrels that flit here and there around the mountain.

PalomarAnd lots of trees and flowers too. The lupines were in bloom, and I fell in love with them.

PalomarEric had a great night observing, which means that he went to bed around 6am and slept until 1pm. While he was sleeping, Eric’s mom and I went out exploring. I took a handful of pictures of her, but this one is my favorite. Can you spot her down there?

PalomarIt was really warm this morning, but we still enjoyed the sweet scent of the redwoods. Someone was really excited to see them! The fun will continue next month, when we hope Eric’s dad will also be able to come to Palomar. We’re introducing the whole family, one by one.

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