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Friday Slide Show: City Fire Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

12 March 2021

We had the bright idea of taking the Olympus E-PL1 along on our hike up Twin Peaks a week ago. The trouble with bright ideas is that, coming from a dim mind, they aren't all that illuminating.

In this case, we'd shackled ourselves brilliantly with a 42mm maximum focal length, which was the equivalent of 82mm on a full-frame camera. That's barely telephoto.

And when you climb a mountain (OK, a hill), you want the lens to go where you can't reach because you have a fabulous view. So we really should never go up Twin Peaks without that 18-200mm zoom we keep on one of our Nikon dSLRs.

We know that. But, you know, we're too bright for our own good.

And on this occasion we could be seen near the summit kicking ourselves. Because as we looked over the stone walls of the viewing platform, we saw a house on fire down at the bottom of the hill.

We didn't leave our vantage spot until we had accumulated one more regret, though.

It was a plume of black smoke when we first noticed it. Then we heard sirens. And by the time we got to the wall, the white smoke (or is that steam?) was rising from the scene.

Elapsed time was about five minutes (we didn't hurry).

We cropped the third shot in this series so you could see the Fire Department's water show. Which is as close as we could get with the 14-42mm zoom.

We didn't leave our vantage spot until we had accumulated one more regret, though.

The hill beneath us was alive with yellow sourgrass. It's pretty stuff if it isn't in your garden. And with the bay beyond and the sky above, we couldn't resist composing a vertical shot.

But then we noticed a fellow walking his dog up the hill and we swear we heard strains of The Sound of Music. But again, our 42mm telephoto barely got there. And if we showed the full crop, you'd never know what we were looking at.

So we cropped that one like a drone shot for you. Best we could do.

We were only comforted by turning around and seeing the even more brilliant vandalism of the scope stands. The scopes themselves were removed a while ago as a precaution. But that didn't prevent someone from trying to see if there were any stray quarters left in the stands, apparently.

We're experiencing a crime spree in the city.

In fact, only the day before a TV news camera crew had been robbed of their gear at the northern entrance to the hill.

Makes you wonder what's going to happen when they open Twin Peaks to vehicular traffic again. We're still at high risk for coronavirus transmission but the city has plans to open the south approach part of the day anyway.

The trouble with bright ideas, as we said, is that they aren't bright enough.

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