Views of Gazelle, California

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Made it back to Berkeley tonight after a perhaps overly ambitious five-day trip up to northern Idaho and back. Total mileage: 2,195. That’s a lot, actually. More details on all that later, perhaps.

In the meantime: On the way south, I had an impulse to get off I-5 south of Yreka to take a couple pictures of Mount Shasta from an overpass. Then I headed down old U.S. 99, which parallels the freeway on the west, and came to the townlet of Gazelle.The pink-painted commercial building on the east side of the road prompted me to stop. According to a couple of local histories, the building was originally part of the Denny-Bar Company, a chain of stores started by three brothers in Callahan, a mining town in the mountains west of Gazelle. One of the histories, “The State of Jefferson,” includes a period picture of the building before the arcade was built onto the front; the date at the peak of the false-front gable is 1898, the same as the modern metal numbers affixed to the same location today. Most of the original details are still visible, though the only evidence the place has ever done business is a Holsum Bread sign painted on the north wall.

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3 Replies to “Views of Gazelle, California”

  1. The country around Gazelle is high, dry plains; in fact, that area is one of my favorite parts of the drive up to Oregon. To the south, you drive up through fairly thick woods; when you cross the highway summit at the western foot of Mount Shasta, you descend into this high plain environment; it’s in the lee of the highest part of the coast range, which is why it’s dry, I guess. Then, when you climb over the summit over the Siskiyous into Oregon, you’re in another zone altogether — wetter and more verdant. And yeah, a lot of this area of California reminds you of that hilly back-country area of New South Wales.

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