by Shneor Sherman
Those are the two good things - meeting Jeff and the Ranger giving me the map and telling the story. Jeff was going try Blue Canyon (about 2 hours from IHOP); I decided to try Esparto because the smoke looked pretty pervasive. I arrived at Esparto around 9, and was happy driving in as the Milky Way was quite visible overhead and to the southwest....but the neighbor had left on an outside light that simply ruins night vision everywhere. The light is on even though they haven't been there for weeks. So I guess we can scratch Esparto as an obserivng site until further notice. Maybe they will move?
Anyway, back to Big Hill - there's a paved road to Big Hill 4 miles after the Peavine Road turnoff; it's 3 miles to the top. The next time I'll be able to observe will be October 25. I'm thinking of driving to Big Hill to at least check it out, if it looks good, to observe there.