Emigrant Highways - San Joaquin Valley, California by...
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  2. Emigrant Highways - San Joaquin Valley, CaliforniaEmigrant Highways - San Joaquin Valley, California
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In early spring, 2007, I conducted a photography tour along the routes used by various people to reach the San Joaquin Valley of California, from Okies and Texans in the 1930s to the influx of Latinos in the latter half of the 20th Century.

The San Joaquin Valley, which is the southern two thirds of the Great Central Valley of California, is perhaps the richest agricultural valley in the world. It lies between the Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi Mountains to the east, and the Coast Range Mountains to the west.

We found a diverse range of subjects, from people to wildflowers, from animals to architecture, including the few building still standing at the Sunset Labor Camp, the place made famous in the John Steinbeck novel, Grapes of Wrath. Our explorations to us to the Central Valley towns of Bakersfield, Arvin, and Weedpatch, and into the Tehachapi Mountains, and along a variety of old highways and back roads.

Sunset Labor Camp
Cracked Window, Sunset Labor Camp
View at the Sunset Labor Camp
Cobwebs at the Sunset Labor Camp, Weedpatch, California
Summer Wear
Sheep is Shorn
Shearing Sheep
Waiting their Turn
Sheep Shearing Encampment
Martin Etchamendy, Basque Sheep Rancher
Cowboy near Lamont, California
Albertos Horse
The Good Life
A cowboy, his horse, and a Corona! Photographed on a relaxing Sunday northeast of Bakersfield, California.
Child and her Mother Near Keene
Lupine along Highway 223
Poppy with Honey Bee
Poppies Near Arvin, California
Western Diamondback Rattlesnake
Southern Pacific Rattlesnake
For those who've asked, below, how I managed to come so close to my subject with a camera, indeed, I was bitten and as a result I did die.
Turtle with Young Friend
Happy Bobcat, California Living Museum
This bobcat, one of two in captivity at the zoo, was behind a wire screen. I was able to render that wire invisible by leaning close to it with a long lens - 400mm - while using the largest f/stop possible - f/5.6.
Black Bear with Lunch, California Living Museum
Black Bear at the California Living Museum, near Bakersfield
Our Hosts at the Best Western
We stayed at the pleasant Best Western Motel, very near downtown Bakersfield. The innkeepers are from India.
Renovation in Arvin, California
Caesar Chavez Memorial
Caesar Chavez Gravesite
Abstract Patterns on a Disc Machine
New Grapes
The Tehachapi Loop
Locomotive on the Tehachapi Loop
Tracks, Tehachapi Loop
Tehachapi Loop
Hello, Dolly! Actress Leslie Lane
Waitresses on Break, Basque Restaurant, Bakersfield
Zooming in on the Wool Growers Restaurant, Bakersfield
During a 1 second exposure, I zoomed out on the camera lens (shrinking the image) on the neon sign over the what is probably the best Basque restaurant in Bakersfield. The effect makes it appear the sign is moving toward the viewer.
Neon Reflected in an Irrigation Canal, Bakersfield
Street Reflection
Alley Cat Bar
Straws Inside the Nile Theater
Half Full or Half Empty?
Fox Theater, Bakersfield
Mural Reflection, Bakersfied
Get Your Tat!
Fox Theater, Bakersfield
Fox Theater in Reflection, Bakersfield
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