Harwood Road in east Los Gatos is a meridian

Jim Handy and Bella at Belgatos Park - Harwood Road in east Los Gatos is a meridian

Jim Handy and Bella at Belgatos Park

Do you like maps?  My better half, Jim Handy, is crazy about them. And when he learned that the road just on the other side of the house next door is actually a meridian, he got pretty excited. I think it’s the engineer in him – that beautiful, inner geek – that loves the analysis of it all.

Today’s blog entry, then, is a Guest Post by my map enthusiast (and former volunteer parks commissioner), Jim Handy. This post originally published on LiveInLosGatos.com.

Many think of Harwood Road as the far eastern boundary of Los Gatos, which it nearly is, but there’s much more to this humble road than that.  Travel uphill to the top of the road and you can see views of the entire valley and get into beautiful Belgatos Park and Santa Rosa Open Space, but the majority of the street, the straight part of Harwood Road, has the distinction of following the Mount Diablo Meridian.

View of downtown San Jose from near the top of Harwood Road and Belgatos Park - Harwood Road in east Los Gatos is a meridian

View of downtown San Jose from near the top of Harwood Road and Belgatos Park

 

Back in California’s early days, great tracts of land known as Ranchos or Spanish Land Grants were defined by features that sometimes changed: they might run north to the edge of a creek, east to a tree, south to a boulder,  etc.  Some of  these landmarks could move a bit over time, but when you’re dealing with a tract of thousands of acres, these alterations are very small overall. (more…)

Paving in Belwood of Los Gatos

Paving Belwood – video and post with still photographs

The following video was shot by my husband, Jim Handy:

Road work ahead tiny - Paving in Belwood of Los GatosFor the last week or two, road construction crews have been busy in the Belwood of Los Gatos, Surmont and Belgatos neighborhoods (and other parts of east Los Gatos too). We have received notices on our front porch about road closures, paving dates for various roads and when we can and cannot park on the streets.

As the roadwork began, first the manhole covers were reworked.  That involved removing the paving immediately adjacent to each one, which was a loud job.  Next crosswalks were rubbed out  of existence by a noisy grinding machine, bots dots got scraped away, several stretches of sidewalks and driveways were pulverized into large chunks of concrete (seemed onto to happen where the driveway went over the sidewalk for some reason).

See more photos in rest of article (more…)