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Mt. Madonna Rd.


This is the view from the estate of Henry Miller, the Cattle King of California.  He owned so much land that you could walk from Mexico to Canada on his property, a.. 1.4 million acres of it.  And he built an estate in Mt. Madonna here, which burned and has been weathered all the way down to the stone since it was finished in 1901.  The ghosts of his whole family are said to haunt the mountain, riding horses, wandering the woods.  And why not?  It’s one of the most beautiful places in the South Bay.  Here’s some pics of the ruins….   Henry Miller(real name Heinrich Alfred Kreiser) wasn’t a the land grubbing soulless cattle baron of muckraker novel cliche.  He was a naturalist, dedicated to preserving the land, and he accomplished a very interesting feat during his lifetime: he saved the California Elk. 

At one point elk were thought to be extinct in California, but as Miller was out one day, he and his game warden AC. Tibbett saw the last pair on his land in the marshes near Buena Vista lake in 1874.  Well since he was practically the wealthiest man in the US at this point, he ordered a full-time guard out to keep watch over the elk, and armed guards kept both people and predators away, fed the elk, and saw to it that the herd thrived was cared for.  Nowadays the population is around 4,200 elk in 22 herds across the entire state and is no longer considered to be in danger.  I’ve even seen the herds a few times.

I was in his granddaughter’s house when it was for sale a few years ago…it was one of the strangest places I’ve ever seen.  Right down to a locked door in the hillside with a plaque above it that said KGB in Cyrillic characters.  Go figure.  

Henry Miller the California rancher is not to be confused with Henry Valentine Miller, the beatnik author. (I’m not the only one to give people weird ‘V’ names)

And if you like what I do and want to help me keep doing it, you can donate to the glorious cause via PayPal to
Yes I'm trying to get a Patreon together with video tutorials and walkthroughs and behind-the-scenes cool stuff too.  Give me a week or two to get everything in order & iron out bugs. :happy-wave: 
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© 2017 - 2021 chateaugrief
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SelestuaAurea's avatar
This is like a road for a dream.
mooseowhale's avatar
A perfect single landscape, without crazy things, i like it, bravo :D
ArronK's avatar
Lovely sunset
STARCADER's avatar
my town is like that
That's really a beautiful image! I like the mood. It is so peaceful.
chateaugrief's avatar
Whizzy-The-Elephant's avatar
Reminds me of the moors on Dartmoor, Devon.
PurpleAbyss's avatar
That's cool... And, to be honest, unusual scene. You breathed the life in the image for sure.
chateaugrief's avatar
Thanks for the nice comments!
surrealistic-gloom's avatar
So beautifully done!  :heart:

And your comment(s) are amazing!  :aww:
MoechtegernOtaku's avatar
Oh my gosh, this is so beautiful! OMG SHOCK. 
JTCopper's avatar
Your attention to lighting and detail is beyond extraordinary.
chateaugrief's avatar
Thanks for the nice comment!
Sabs546's avatar
wow this would look amazing in real life
chateaugrief's avatar
yes, it is quite he view spot....
redacegod350's avatar
Simply beautiful. I wish there were more backdrops like this around my state. But slowly and surely, it's becoming more and more like a city... But thank you for this beautiful piece. Also very nice backstory to go along with the piece as well :thumbsup:
Daxserv's avatar
your are very productive much to pick from well done my friend
CrimsonSunset218's avatar
Wow!!!  You drew a road!!!  I'm not sure why I'm surprised... >.>   Maybe it's because this is kind of an inspiring piece.  Almost like a metaphor for something.  It's really cool because we don't know where the road came from or where it's going, so that makes me think of life.  And the awesome scenery around the road makes me think of all the experiences we get during our life. 

*hugs*  Happy Spring, and Happy Creating!
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