He left it out there somewhere…

My good friend David and I went fly fishing last week on private water in the Sacramento Mountains. It was the first time he had been fishing since he had heart surgery last fall and he managed to catch a nice fat rainbow to make his trip extra special. I caught only a couple of chubs, although the week before on that same stretch of water, I managed to catch three nice trout.

The place we fish is not that spectacular for its scenery, but it’s a good place to goclose to home that usually awards good results. However, it has one unusual feature that takes some adjustment.

The person who owns the property runs a ranch that has been in his family for years. During that time, I don’t think they’ve every thrown anything major away. There are at least 30 broken down and abandoned vehicles — at least 11 of them 1980s vintage Ford F-150s. There are several tractors and other bits of farm equipment rusting away in a field near his barn. Old refrigerators, washing machines, water heaters and other domestic appliance carcasses litter an area near his house. There’s also an abandoned 53-foot trailer from some former trucking company which appears to have had a large heavy tree or telephone pole smash down on about midway on its roof.

That’s me next to the tree growing where the motor in this 70s vintage Chevy pickup once lived. Note the two adjacent Ford F-150s and a rusting tractor in the backgrou

However, there’s probably some valuable stuff out there. I noticed several late 1940s-early 50s Chevy trucks whose bodies were in relatively good condition. These old trucks with what I always thought were classic lines have become popular with collectors who restore them. There’s even a five-window cab on one of them, something that’s especially collectable.

Five-window Chevy truck cab with abandoned water heater, washing machine and yet another junked Ford F-150 nearby.

There’s an abandoned Jeep Station Wagon from the late 50s-early 60s, similar to two that my father owned. I can write an entire blog about the adventures I had with that type of vehicle, which maybe I’ll do some day.

There’s also this 59 Chevy two-door sedan, complete with the “cat eye” trail lights. If you look closely, you can see where a tree or shrub once grew up between the rear bumper and the body of the vehicle.

1959 Chevy two-door sedan, with many trim pieces intact and tree-bumper fusion.

I don’t want to call out the person who owns the ranch. He’s a good guy and we’re lucky to have access to his section of the river. His ranch is miles away from any reasonably sized town, and I’m sure he doesn’t have affordable access to a service which could pick up and haul off much of this stuff. However, I think that several of the older vehicles on the property could provide some trim pieces or body panels that would be useful for restoration projects.

Some car restoration expert might find a visit to the ranch interesting and profitable for the owner.

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