FortySeven: Hunter’s Heaven


Continuing the ‘Creeks and Rivers of Silicon Valley’ year long quest.

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Hunter's Heaven, 8x10, oil on board
Hunter’s Heaven, 8×10, oil on board

 

Yes, there’s even duck hunting in Silicon Valley! Historically, the Ohlone Indians thrived on the wildlife and plants in the South San Francisco Bay. Later on, as immigrants populated the valley, hunters would spend days camping in these small cabins, shooting ducks and other fowl that would make up the bulk of meat products for Gold Rush Era San Francisco. They supplied 1000 ducks a week to San Francisco restaurants in the 1890’s. Waterfowl hunting is still permitted here on approximately 10,000 acres of tidal areas and salt ponds of the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge and is administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Duck blinds can be spotted around the south bay, and from what I can determine are for public use, first come, first served. There are also many duck clubs. To some, a duck club may seem nothing more than a mosquito-infested swamp inhabited by stealthy men in camouflage holding shotguns. But in the San Francisco Bay area, including Silicon Valley, duck hunting has been a bailiwick of established money for more than a century.  Many of San Francisco’s prominent families have a duck club (or two) among their assets.

 

I posted quite a few pictures from the morning’s painting excursion in the last post, FortySix: Don’s Sunrise Pix, but here are a few more–

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Continuing my morning painting excursion at the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge, painting 47 is of an old duck hunting cabin preserved close to the headquarters area. The cabin was built by Joe Pine of Niles who lived there until the late 1960′s. I painted and wrote about Niles and Charlie Chaplin in Nine, Ten: Charlie Chaplin.

Newark Slough can be seen in the background, and is fed by the Sanjon de los Alisos Creek and a number of unnamed engineered channels and culverts.

 


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