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P_7878

Roaming the Steinbeck Country in a 414A Chancellor...

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[This is a topic close to my heart, and additionally, I also wished to fly this likeable Cessna Twin for a second time here (if you wish, please see my previous post of this same a/c climbing away from San Jose (KSJC) airport, with a thankful correction from a member...🙂...In my defense, lately all kinds of issues have impacted my SIM activities and my attention to details, and I don't mean RL issues...🙂...). First, my Xbox/MSFS has been more problematic than normal e.g., error loading start-up screens and loss of (Garmin/GTN) avionics displays in the cockpit. On top of it, the Avsim server issues (of past week) complicated any posting activities. Now, with Avsim issues already resolved, I had a very good flight today on this (special) topic that has been long on my mind. So, here we go...]

It's well known that Steinbeck's (most significant) work that immortalized central California, centered around a small geographical region, the so-called "Steinbeck Country", about 100 miles down the California coastline from Monterey Bay to Morro Bay, and about 50 miles across to the Gabilan Mountain Range. At the heart of the "Steinbeck Country", the source of his inspiration, lie the Salinas Valley and the Salinas River that flows through it, the focus of my flights today. For the first flight (see shot #s 1-10 and the Garmin Map in shot #4), I start off from San Jose (KSJC), a place frequently mentioned in his novels, then fly south to the city of Salinas, Steinbeck's birthplace, and then west to the coastal city of Monterey (KMRY), the location of some of his most significant works of fiction. For the 2nd flight (see Garmin Map in shot #11), I fly to the Gabilan Mountains, and then south along the Salinas Valley, via the town of Soledad (shot #18) of "Mice and Men" to King City (KKIC). King City is the plot location for "Red Pony" which I've been coincidentally re-reading lately. Regarding the naming of the Pony, there is a reference there to the Gabilan Mountains (shot #s 13-16), located on the eastern side of the Salinas Valley..."I think I'll call him Gabilan Mountains..."..."It's a pretty long name. Why don't you just call him Gabilan...?". So, I thought, my trip, here, would not be complete without visiting the Gabilan Mountain Range...🙂...and its highest summit, Fremont Peak (shot #15), which is mentioned in "Travels with Charley" (Charley was Steinbeck's pet poodle).

We know that Nobel Prize for literature, unlike e.g., the Booker or the Pulitzer, is not given for a single work of fiction, but for a whole body of work. Nonetheless, there is always one novel that stands out as the cream of the crop that gets a special mention e.g., for Albert Camus, it might be "The Stranger" (translated for me...🙂...), for V.S. Naipaul, it might be "A House for Mr. Biswas", and for Rabindranath Tagore, it might be "Gitanjali" (also translated) etc. And for Steinbeck, it was "The Grapes of Wrath"...the plot of which was partly set in the valley down from the same Gabilan Mountains of "Red Pony". 

After today's (virtual) exploration, I surely got to know and appreciate the Steinbeck Country lot better than ever before, along with its natural beauty, and the story of struggles and emotions of people that was infused into it, in a bygone era. From my unique (aerial) vantage point, as I flew over these valleys, mountains, rivers, and cities, while watching the sunset and the moving shadows on these mountains, there was a unique satisfaction...of places I've only read and wondered about through the magical depictions of Steinbeck....🙂...

My concluding few pictures, below, are from the heart of the Salinas Valley, as my Cessna is flying down this valley and the Salinas River (shot #19), with the Sun setting behind the Gabilan Mountains and the silver Moon shining over the wing of my Cessna (last shot #20) ...🙂..

Thanks for viewing ...!

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Nice merging of two interests (or should I say passions?), flight simming and literature.

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Fine set of shots, like the lightning..

cheers 😉

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My Rig : Intel I7-7820X 8 Core ( 16 Threads ) @ 4,0, ASUS Prime X299 A II,  64 GB 3600-17 Trident Z, 750W Corsair CX750 80+ Bronze,  MSI 8GB RTX 2080 Super Ventus XS OC, WD 4TB and WD 6TB 7200 HD,  Win10 V.22H2, in use 3x 4K monitors 2x32 Samsung 1x27 LG  3840x2160.

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John, pmplayer, Will, and UrgentSiesta:

Thank you all for the comments and responses…!!

 

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Posted (edited)

Great post and thanks for the story about Steinbeck, P_7878! I remember that we two had a discussion about him a few years back already in one of your posts. If I had to choose just one of his many books, it would definitely be "Travels with Charley: In search of America". By the way, and I hope I remember this correctly, when he arrived in Monterey on this trip, he was so upset seeing these huge crowds of tourists (and this was in 1960 🙂), that he almost "fled" through the Mojave Desert and Arizona and only stopped, once he had arrived in Texas. 😃

Edited by bernd1151
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Any attempt to stretch fuel is guaranteed to increase headwinds

My specs: AMD Radeon RX6700XT, AMD Ryzen 9 5900X, 32GB RAM, 34" monitor, screen resolution: 2560x1080

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Nice looking twin, not sure I'd choose black paint...too much polishing. 😜

Darryl

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On 6/22/2024 at 2:37 PM, bernd1151 said:

Great post and thanks for the story about Steinbeck, P_7878! I remember that we two had a discussion about him a few years back already in one of your posts. If I had to choose just one of his many books, it would definitely be "Travels with Charley: In search of America". By the way, and I hope I remember this correctly, when he arrived in Monterey on this trip, he was so upset seeing these huge crowds of tourists (and this was in 1960 🙂), that he almost "fled" through the Mojave Desert and Arizona and only stopped, once he had arrived in Texas. 😃

Thanks much, bernd. I know you are a bit of a fan of both "Steinbeck" and that other guy "Hemingway"...🙂...

You're right. I forget where but I do recall reading background life of Steinbeck and mentions of his aversion to incursion of populace and crowd into his own realm...🙂...BTW, bernd, his paternal side of the family was called "Großsteinbeck", which was shortened by his grandfather to "Steinbeck" when they arrived in the United States. The family farm in the town of Heiligenhaus, Germany, I understand, still exists, and is still named "Großsteinbeck"...

I finally finished reading the "The Red Pony"...I've mentioned above...only 100 pages, but took forever ...no seatback entertainment screen on the 757 (per my other post) helped ...🙂...

I was thinking about my pictures and virtual visit (never been there), of this post, while reading it. In particular, the 3rd shot from bottom, shows the two mountain ranges on both sides of the Salinas Valley...Santa Lucia on the west and the Gabilans on the east. Steinbeck writes of these as below:

"He though often of the miles of ridge after ridge until at last there was the sea. When the peaks were pink in the morning they invited him among them; and when they the sun had gone over the edge in the evening and the mountains were a purple-like despair, then Jody was afraid of them..."

"Now, he turned his head towards the mountains of the east, the Gabilans, and they were jolly mountains, with hill ranches in their creases, and with pine trees growing on the crests..."

Delectable writing indeed...🙂...Cheers...!

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On 6/24/2024 at 2:55 PM, SP2472 said:

Nice looking twin, not sure I'd choose black paint...too much polishing. 😜

Darryl

Thanks, Darryl. My favorite color is "Red"...redder the better...🙂...like that "GO COUGS" Alaska livery in your recent post...not sure why I picked this one, maybe the writing on the livery...

And, yes, agree, this is a very nice twin...I like it a lot, though it's not a Piper Twin...🙂....

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