River Views

By the time this is published I should be back from my second backpacking trip of the summer; unless a bear or snake or foolish step on a mountainside gets me first. As in many outdoor excursions of any length, my old pal Steven Steelrod will be along for the ride. As an aging cowboy […]

River Views

On the Fourth of July the branches of the chokecherry trees in the yard bent nearly to the ground, heavy with fruit. The next morning proved to be a race against robins, warblers, blue jays and woodpeckers for the spoils. The birds squawked and whined in protest as humans salvaged the last quart of tiny […]

River Views

In this time of economic crisis, in this time of war and unrest, would you sign a petition which uses the following provocative language? Whenever any government becomes destructive of the rights of its citizens it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government, laying its […]

River Views

The May 30th AVA contained an article describing the bureaucratic mess one person (Gregg Stevens) went through dealing with the Coastal Commission after winter weather blew a tree over; leaving a hole in the ground that needed filling. The regulatory run-around the article’s author experienced with the Coastal Commission cost an untold amount of time […]

River Views

The June primary election is behind us. Ravens and blue jays perform stealth attacks on the cherry trees. Summer is here. Schools are out and reunion season begins this weekend when the Ukiah High School Class of 1972 celebrates its 40th. Friday and Saturday gatherings will be held at the Barra and Parducci Wineries, which […]

River Views

It’s June and I can see trees falling on the steep slope south of the Albion River, part of a Mendocino Redwood Co. timber harvest. Fir and redwood crash to the ground in McKay Gulch to my west as well. As close as a hundred feet from this house Anderson Logging, contracted by Mendocino Redwood […]

River Views

As if the sound of chainsaws in the six a.m. hour wasn’t bracing enough, bare feet on the kitchen floor stepped nearly toe to pincer with a scorpion. There are dozens of species of scorpions; ours are forest scorpions, Uroctonus mordax.

River Views

Your average Mendocino County shopper probably wouldn’t think twice about purchasing naturally flavored incense. The key words are “naturally flavored.” The natural flavor in some incense is castoreum, made from the secretions of the sacs between the anus and the external genitals of beavers.

River Views

Recent River Views recounted the feud between the Frost and Coates families of Little Lake, the 1867 gunfight that killed Elisha Frost and five Coates men, and the subsequent violence of Frost family members. Mart Frost, who single-handedly shot down Abraham, Henry and Wesley Coates also commanded an 1879 vigilante band that lynched three young […]

River Views

The last two River Views columns recounted the feud between the Frost and Coates families of Little Lake (think southern Willits and you’re there), seemingly culminating in an 1867 gun battle that left five of the Coates clan dead as well as the oldest Frost brother, Elisha. In the shootout Elisha’s brother Mart Frost gunned […]

River Views

“When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” That line from John Ford’s film The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance proves apt for tales of the Old West time and again. The shootout between feuding members of the Coates and Frost families on Little Lake’s (southern Willits) dusty main street in October, 1867 was fictionalized […]