I’ve worked as a photographer with the San Diego Natural History Museum (SDNHM) since 2010 on a project called the San Jacinto Resurvey. The goal of this project is to follow an important study done 100 years ago by Joseph Grinnell, Harry Swarth, Walter Taylor, and Charles Richardson on the biology of the lands between the northern slopes of San Jacinto Mountain and Santa Rosa Mountain just north of the San Diego County line. The work on the resurvey is led by Phil Unitt, Lori Hargrove and Scott Tremor with a lot of help from friends. Like Grinnell’s study a 100+ years ago, the SDNHM team’s work spanned several years.
The teams visited each site that Grinnell and company stayed a century earlier. A lot has changed in the region in those 100 years. One of the goals has been to document the effects that human encroachment and climate change has had on the ecosystems there. Grinnell led teams performed surveys over most of California in the early 1900’s and other teams are retracing these pioneering works near Lassen Mountain, Yosemite, the Coastal Range, the deserts, the Great Basin, and the Southern Sierra Nevada Mountains (Sequoia). <Link Here>
Santa Rosa Mountain has a special place in my heart, holding memories from as long ago as the early 1970’s when my Dad and I would travel up the mountain to camp at the Santa Rosa Summit. We enjoyed staying in Steve Ragsdale’s old log cabin with its kingsized fireplace where we’d enjoy all night fires, late evenings playing guitars and enjoying the good company of friends. We spent the days on hikes and climbs up the wooden stairs that Ragsdale built to the treetop lookout that he constructed to watch for fires in the 1930’s (I believe). All that remains is the fireplace and the slab that the cabin was built on. Everything else was demolished by USFS probably 25 years ago. You can read more about Ragsdale and Santa Rosa Mountain <Here>.
I travelled to Santa Rosa Mountain Wednesday (8/12/15) and spent 27 hours working on image collection. The images from this past outing are below: