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Montezuma Hills Wind Farm



Interesting places in Montezuma Hills Wind Farm:
Birds Landing  


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New vs Old Turbines

New vs Old Turbines
Made by kqedquest
Like these ones, many of the wind turbines in the Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area, in Solano County, California, are newer models than the ones in the Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area. Researchers believe that replacing old wind turbines in the Altamont Pass area with new ones like these ones would help reduce bird deaths in several ways. First of all, taller turbines are out of the flight paths of raptors such as golden eagles. The newest turbines in the Montezuma Hills are 400 ft tall while old turbine models are 100 ft tall. Newer turbines are also more efficient. The most efficient turbines in the Montezuma Hills produce 3 MW of energy each. (In comparison, some turbines at the Altamont Pass produce six times less energy; others produce 30 times less energy). More powerful turbines make it possible to produce large amounts of energy with fewer turbines and thus create fewer obstacles for the birds. And finally, replacing old turbines with new ones gives owners an opportunity to heed researchers' advice and place the turbines in areas that are less dangerous for birds. For example, turbines should be kept out of canyons, which are preferred areas for birds of prey to hunt. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

The UFO of Rio Vista

The UFO of Rio Vista
Made by Matt Granz Photography
Miguel (Amigo) and I heard a car coming from out in the distance while we were out in this very lonely location in the dead of night, and we decided to get a set of light trail pics. Well, we patiently waited until finally we saw the illumination of headlights from off in the distance. Everything was set. Finally, the full car came into view and as it got to the road we were on, it went right on past… on the other road… not ours... …that wasn't sposed to happen. I was not going to let us be let down that way… hey! my lens was already open! I handed Miguel my IR remote and ran to my car and drove it on down the road. Y'know… sometimes you got to make things happen for yourself. That's my lesson for tonight kids. Schools out. As usual, this image looks best viewed on Black in Lightbox nuf sed!

Graceful Turbines

Graceful Turbines
Made by kqedquest
The newer wind turbine models have simple, clean lines. They not only produce more energy than their older counterparts, but they're also more modern-looking. Since the 1980s, when California started its experiment with wind energy, turbines have gone through many designs. Some of the most memorable turbines are the Flowind vertical axis turbines, which were shaped like egg beaters. The 169 egg beater turbines in the Altamont Pass were removed in 2004 and replaced with modern turbines similar to the ones in this photo. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

New and Old Turbines

New and Old Turbines
Made by kqedquest
At the Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area, in Solano County, California, old wind turbines, like the ones on the left, coexist with newer models like the one on the right. The newer models produce more electricity than the older models, so it's possible to place fewer turbines in the landscape and still produce the same amount of electricity. Fewer turbines means fewer obstacles for the birds. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

Wind Turbines in Solano County, California

Wind Turbines in Solano County, California
Made by kqedquest
Far from the Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area, wind projects are moving forward at full speed. In the Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area, in Solano County, wind farms produce 400 megawatts of energy and 200 more megawatts could be installed if two new projects are approved. This would put Solano County’s wind energy output on par with the Altamont’s. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

Facing the Light

Facing the Light
Made by crispyparty
These were the last few photos I took of my recent trip to California. The last few days before my departure date was a bit drab and rainy. But the last 2 days were just beautiful with some clouds that sent bursts of color during the latter part of the day. I wish I had found this spot earlier in my trip. Then again I guess I was still lucky to see them with a wonderful full moon as well(**see Dusk or Dawn on following photo). The jetstreak was an added treat. It was quite a good day for some landscape photography. Location: Rio Vista, CA View LARGE here.

Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh

Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh
Made by Fmkmkm
There are several wind energy farms around the San Francisco bay area. This one on the Montezuma Hills near the Sacramento river delta is one of the largest. The windmill turbines are massive (some reach 415 feet). When I passed by several weekends ago, there was a gentle breeze and the turbines were turning leisurely. I thought that this was one case in which movement and HDR could go together nicely. I took one series of 5 shots and another of 7 shots (+/- 1EV) to capture more of the turbines’ movement. This image is the result of the 7-shot series.

Substation

Substation
Made by kqedquest
EnXco, a wind energy company based in Escondido, in Southern California, owns wind turbines and this substation in the Montezuma Hills Wind Resource Area in Solano County, California. EnXco also owns 750 wind turbines in the Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

Trolley

Trolley
Made by SeabeeCook
Railfans re-board the Peninsula Railway Car No. 52 at the southern most point of operation on former Sacramento Northern Line. We took a 40-minute trolley car to a point about five miles south of the Western Railway Museum, just south of Gum Grove (Shiloh Road). Yesterday, a group of friends toured the shops and car barns of the Western Railway Museum California State Route 12 between Rio Vista and Suisun City in Solano County. The museum is located on the right-of-way of the Sacramento Northern Line.

Cannot beat the P&SR!

Cannot beat the P&SR!
Made by SP8254 - Catching Up
The Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railroad operated through western Sonoma County from Petaluma, Santa Rosa and Forestville, via Sebastopol. Naturally, I have a great love for the P&SR, since it ran through my hometown of Sebastopol. One of my earliest RR memories was watching an SP switcher go down the middle of Main St. Alas, the line is completely gone. However, former P&SR car #63 still operates at the Western RR Museum in Rio Vista. It was such a treat to see the #63 in action.

Windmill

Windmill
Made by bknittle
This is the Church were my Father in Law was laid to rest. It was a sad day, but a good day and the family gathered and reconnected. Shiloh Church was built in 1876 and located in Denverton, Solano County, California. It is in the middle of fields of new growth of wheat and oats. There are also many windmills in the area. I am impressed by these large windmills and find them quite impressive. I have places a set of these windmill photos on Flicker.

Sacramento Northern Railway

Sacramento Northern Railway
Made by I Love Badger Dogs!
An abandoned shed on the old Sacramento Northern Railway tracks a little south of Birds Landing CA. This stop was actually called Molena. Hopefully soon to be refurbished for extended electric trolley use! Well, that is what the Western RR Museum has planned but lacking the necessary funds this project may never be completed. A shame though since this is an important piece of history that should be preserved for future generations of railfans!

A Waste Of Wind Power

A Waste Of Wind Power
Made by I Love Badger Dogs!
Some pointy-headed tree-hugging wingnuts want these multi-million dollar units dismantled because a couple of birds wandered into the blades of some windmills. If more nuclear power plants had been built we wouldn't need these windmills in the first place. Great planning you ignorant eco-freaks! I suggest that those who wish these units dismantled pay for it themselves and not burden the rest of us with their extremist viewpoint.

danbo is: thinking he can't get enough of windmills!

danbo is: thinking he can't get enough of windmills!
Made by hyimted
danbo is: thinking he can't get enough of windmills. even though we just went to altamont pass, we decided to check out the rio vista turbines too. can you tell how happy he is? me personally ... i'm kinda burned on windmills! a special thanks to for teaching me how to make danbo smile! here's the link if you're curious: youtube video

ex-Sacramento Northern

ex-Sacramento Northern
Made by N4VAL
Abandoned buildings. Looking south along the ex-Sacramento Northern line north of the Dinkelspiel Rd crossing ~ [Birds Landing] Solano County, CA Note - The Bay Area Electric Railroad Association now maintains this line and operates an electric trolley. The Birds Landing Rd crossing is as far south as the trolley goes, so far. This section does not have the overhead electrical line.

Not Don Quixote's Wind Mills

Not Don Quixote's Wind Mills
Made by kqedquest
This field of wind turbines along Shilo Rd. in Solano County, California, is a sight to behold. QUEST TV segment air date: 6/26/07 View the companion KQED TV piece on the QUEST website and discuss it in the QUEST Science Blog.

Petaluma & Santa Rosa #63

Petaluma & Santa Rosa #63
Made by El Cobrador
At End of Wire--the end of the electrified trackage on which the Western Railway Museum (Suisun City, California) operates their restored equipment. This is former Sacramento Northern Railway trackage. Not far south of this point, the carferry San Ramon carried the electric interurban trains across the Suisun Bay on the their journeys to and from San Francisco and the East Bay.

the rio vista gangstas

the rio vista gangstas
Made by hyimted
it's been a while since i got to hang with the a-team. unfortunately, john couldn't make it ... but look who got to sub for him! the gang had a blast wandering around rio vista, playing with nd filters, and just having a jolly ol' time! oh yeah ... i think galib must be good luck ... we actually did not get stopped or harassed by any sort of security this time!

Farm - Rio Vista Junction

Farm - Rio Vista Junction
Made by pchurch92
Old farm located at the Rio Vista junction. The countryside has been depopulated since the closure of the interurban railway service in this area. This is accessible only by the museum's streetcars which run along the old Petaluma and Santa Rosa right of way. This is at the Western Railway Museum located near Fairchild at the northern end of San Francisco Bay.

Scene In A Dream

Scene In A Dream
Made by Tony Immoos
I knew I had a special image as soon as I clicked the shutter and I knew exactly what I would do with it when home. I spent the entire drive home thinking of a title and finally this popped into my head. I must have thought of two dozen titles including the alternate choice, Seen In A Dream. Hope you enjoy. Thanks Nat, for the font. If your gonna dream, .



Nearest places of interest:

Birds Landing
Suisun Marsh Salinity Control Gates
Sherman Island The Access Windsurfing Launch
Sherman Island The Access Kite Launch
  McEldowney Ranch
Trilogy at Rio Vista
Car House One
Western Railway Museum

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