The first place I went when I rented a Tamron 150-600mm lens was Ramona Grasslands County Preserve. The Grasslands are located in the Santa Maria Valley between the coastal mesas and the mountains of the Peninsular Ranges in west-central San Diego County. The Preserve consists of 3,521 acres with a 480-acre western portion having a four-mile loop trail.
The Ramona Grasslands Preserve includes a significant section of the remaining undeveloped portion of the Santa Maria Creek watershed, which supports a variety of habitat types, including native and non-native grasslands, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, oak woodlands, Santa Maria Creek, adjacent riparian area, and a diversity of unique vernal pools, vernal swales, and alkali playas.
Many rare animals make their homes in the Grasslands, including Stephens’ kangaroo rat, fairy shrimp, purple stipa, blue-eyed grass, and woolly blue curls. There is no lack of raptors in the skies, and a nesting pair of American Bald Eagles have been in the Grasslands in the recent few years.
In this post, however, I present only some panoramas of the Grasslands. I’ll have wildlife pictures in a future post, although there is a rabbit in one of these pictures. See if you can find it.
These panoramas used anywhere from 2 to 24 pictures taken from the loop trail and then stitched together using Photoshop’s Photomerge function.
The Witch Fire (yes, we name our fires in California, kind of like people in the East name their hurricanes) of 2007 roared through the Grasslands and consumed virtually every blade of grass. Many of the trees also did not make it through the fire, but even the dead trees make beautiful pictures. Mother & Father Nature know what they are doing.