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North State Needs Rain

by Ryan Loughrey

Although sometimes it can be a nuisance, whatwith getting our hair wet or making us wear umbrellas, the rain is much needed. These photos were taken less than two weeks ago, showing Shasta lake with water levels the lowest they have been in over a decade.

The most visible is Tunnel No. 6, which was built by Central Pacific Railroad, and could be seen off of Lakeshore Drive. Visitors could park nearby, and walk down to two separate entrances. The more accessible of the entrances allows for an interesting glimpse into the tunnel, but the mud and shallow water stop any sight-seers from entering. The other entrance was accessible after either climbing above or around (which necessitated boulder hopping when this reporter was there), and from this entrance people were able to enter the tunnel. The ground was soft and brown, the roof was no longer concrete but jagged rock.

Exploring around the lake led to scenic vistas of land previously underwater, more dry and cracked land, bridges with long legs that looked like they belonged in a Dali painting. HIlls with layered horizontal lines, indicating past water levels.

The lake’s natural beauty was marred by other less attractive human artifacts, such as abandoned boats, broken umbrellas, soda cans, and the occasional forlorn plastic bag.

As I write this the sky is dark and overcast and gentle rain is falling, hopefully enough to bring life back into California. This will definitely be an interesting winter.

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