At Middle Bar: New picnic tables under the trees, overlooking the river. Gordon Miller would be so pleased. One man was fishing from the bridge, briefly. A couple on a motorcycle paused for a birthday portrait.
At Pardee Reservoir: Resident Canada geese, some ducks, two red-tailed hawks, and reservoir levels low enough you could wade (carefully) across the river upstream of the Middle Bar Bridge (in waders following all EBMUD rules, of course).
Above Gwin Mine Road: A new section of the Coast-to-Crest Trail under construction.
In Pine Grove, on the sign by the park: "Have a Joyous Kwanzaa" along with "Merry Christmas." First mention of Kwanzaa I've ever seen on anything official in Amador.
On Pine Grove-Volcano Road: A llama guarding a herd of sheep.
It was a lovely Amador County New Year's Day: Scenic beauty, history, nature, culture and agriculture, all in an outing of less than three hours. We are blessed, indeed.