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Farming Rust

Posted by
Stephen Phillips (San Francisco, United States) on 4 October 2009 in Landscape & Rural and Portfolio.

Out along Interstate 80 - about 61 km (38 mi.) east of San Francisco - the highway climbs a steep grade past Sulpher Mountain and then snakes along for several miles before dropping onto the flat marshlands that lead to the California Central Valley.

Along this stretch - just east of the American Canyon Road exit - stands a fleet of beat-up old farm equipment - sitting among the grasses and star thistle year after year - fading in the sun and rusting in the fog and rain. You can only access the old road where they sit from this one exit. By the time I see them at 70 mph (110 kph) - I'm long past the turn-off. The next exit is more than 8 km (5mi.) away - so I never have stopped. Until this past Monday. The weather was beautiful and I thought of these aging relics before I reached the exit.

These are really old and unfamiliar pieces of machinery. The one on today's post has cement disks inside the forward wheel rims - my guess is for added weight to the front wheels. I was also drawn to the dry grasses enveloping all of them.

So - for the next four days: "Farming Rust"

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ordinaryimages from Kentucky Bluegrass, United States

Looks like a McCormick-Derring 10-20 [hp] made by International Harvester in the 30's. The concrete was ballast to handle all that horsepower : ] best...jerry

4 Oct 2009 5:46am

@ordinaryimages: "Whoa, Nelly - steady all them horses !" - Thanks Jerry, for the generous details on this. I'll be curious to see if you can help us with the details on Tuesday's and Wednesday's posts. Thanks, again.

Calusarus from St Sorlin en Valloire, France

the mechanic is late. And what a delay for repairing !
I like this shot

4 Oct 2009 7:02am

Paco Díaz from Palma de Mallorca, Spain

I love this kind of photos, and I love these old vehicles.
Thanks for posting it.

4 Oct 2009 7:49am

Heinz from Hamm, Germany

Hallo Stephen,
ein gutes Foto, ich liebe SW.
Heinz

4 Oct 2009 7:56am

jpdm from Pignans, France

back in far west, great rustic pic, nice b&w

4 Oct 2009 9:31am

Chris from South Jersey, United States

very cool - I love old farm equipment (we have the restored tractors at our fair every year that you may have seen my shots of).....I love the rust in this one and the overgrown state that it is in....very effective in b&w....

4 Oct 2009 12:59pm

dabbler from Minneapolis, United States

beautifully framed & depicted

4 Oct 2009 1:20pm

bluechameleon from Vancouver, Canada

What a cool find! I really like this shot, the brightness of the tones and all the detail. Well spotted!

4 Oct 2009 1:21pm

Evelyne Dubos from Le Mans, France

B&W suit well to this interesting subject, indeed !! Great find !!

4 Oct 2009 5:04pm

Viewfinder from Bradenton, FL, United States

Glad you had the foresight to stop this time; what a great visual of this old equipment fading away, and the surrounding grasses and stuff that would gradually help nature reclaim what is hers from our bold human efforts to tame the untameable.

4 Oct 2009 8:13pm

Betty from Phillipsburg, United States

Fantastic find and perfect in B&W. I would love to know their histories and uses!

4 Oct 2009 8:45pm

Liang from San Francisco, United States

OK, that explains it from this photo. i've also been here, but there were wires everywhere that i was too scared to trespass, you captured it well stephen!

5 Oct 2009 5:11am

grant from kansas city, United States

love it!

5 Oct 2009 4:40pm

MARIANA from Waterloo, Canada

Super ! Love this find :) Cool framing !

6 Oct 2009 5:09pm

k@ from Paris, France

Love how the long legs flowers are like girls around "him" ! :)

6 Oct 2009 6:59pm