One of the best things about living in San Diego is the enormous amount of diversity - biodiversity - and topographical diversity that the area provides. From the beach to the plateaus, foothills, and eventually the mountains, there are plenty of spots that have either been eroded away to form something unique, or altered by man to construct a unique spot. One of the quintessential man-made "secret" spots is the "secret stairway" of La Mesa.
One of the most iconic buildings in San Diego is the California Building, otherwise known as the Museum of Man. Whether one is walking or driving into Balboa Park over the Cabrillo Bridge, or flying into San Diego from foreign or domestic destinations, the California Building is hard to miss with its signature blue dome, stone ornamentation and soaring tower.
The more I travel in the Sierra Nevada mountains, the more convinced I am that one of its best spots is also one of the most accessible spots, the Meysan Lake Trail. I first hiked the Meysan Lake trail back in 1998; and when I came back to it in 2013, I wondered why I had avoided it for that length of time. Fortunately I did not have to wait another fifteen years to revisit the Meysan Lake trail, as I hiked it this last weekend. As this trail is very straightforward to follow, I'm going to focus on current trail conditions in 2015 that I experienced.
One of the drawbacks to living in Southern California is that there are almost too many places to explore. This means that while I have certain favorite locations, it may be months - or years before I get the chance to hike them again. When I do get back to a favorite spot, I'm always interested to see how the trail and area has changed for the better, or for the worse. This last weekend, I had the opportunity to make it back to Harper's Creek in Cuyamaca State Park. Harper's Creek is off of the East Side Trail in Green Valley, and is a great canyon with a seasonal flow of water.
In addition to its myths and legends, Iceland is also the land of spectacular waterfalls. These waterfalls are some of Europe’s most powerful because of the precipitation that the island receives along with seasonal glacial and snow melt. One of the largest and most powerful of these falls is Skogafoss, which is located slightly outside of the town of Skogar in Southeast Iceland. Skogafoss means “forest waterfall” in Icelandic; and while there are no trees around the waterfall today, the waterfall itself is a spectacular classic rectangular waterfall that cascades down the former sea cliffs. At twenty five meters wide (75 feet) and sixty meters (180 feet) in height, the fall is an impressive sight that can be seen from a far distance.
While San Diego is a young city in terms of history, it has a number of hidden historic gems. Many of these locations are clustered near the current city center (such as the Whaley House), but one of the spots, the Old Mission Dam, is located in the middle of San Diego's largest municipal park, Mission Trails. The Old Mission Dam is a historic structure for a number of reasons, but first and foremost, it is the oldest colonial engineering project on the Pacific Coast.
Iceland is known as the land of fire and ice; and is also known for its stunning scenery. One of the lesser known facts about Iceland is that is also a land of magic and mystery, as over eighty percent (80%) of the country believes in elves. With abandoned farmhouses, and re-routed roads, among other things, Iceland also has a number of unique manmade spots to visit. None, is more iconic, however, than the wreck of a United States Navy Douglas Super DC-3 plane on Sólheimasandur Beach