As the hills surrounding San Benito County turn green and fields of wild mustard flowers stretch into the distance, one can’t help but notice that spring has arrived.
From livestock grazing open pastures in San Juan Bautista and Tres Pinos to vineyards stretching across Pacines, new life and growth can be seen in every corner of the county.
Some San Benito County residents felt spring came early this year, as they were able to watch the transformation of scenery while driving to work or coming home from school.
“My favorite time of the year is two weeks after the rain stops,” said Hollister resident Brittany Huth. “I drive on Fairview to get to and from work. I love watching the hills turn green and get dusted with the yellow mustard flowers. It looks like a Bob Ross painting.”
For others, the change of seasons and extra rain brought an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. When Southside Road near Tres Pinos became partly flooded from the Tres Pinos Creek, swollen from recent rainfall, locals enjoyed the water and outdoors with friends and family.
“I moved here three years ago and the first time it rained really hard the day afterwards we went to get gas at the Tres Pinos gas station. The road was closed and we saw the water rushing by,” said Kasandra Correa, a junior at San Benito High School. “We got out of the car and decided to check it out.”
Three years later, Correa and her family look forward to the water and natural beauty surrounding it.
“We swim in it now,” she said. “I like to play with my dog. Sometimes I put the ball in the water and he will run in the water to get it. The sun on the water is really beautiful. I teach my brother how to skip rocks.”
Derek Barnes, who lives on Spring Grove Road in Hollister, embraces the changing landscape.
“Living out in the country you are able to see how people’s fields, ag land and trees all change from season to season,” Barnes said. “It’s very green and lush out there right now because we have had so much rain.”
For Barnes, though he said he enjoys the visual aspects of the changes, he wonders how the extra rain may affect local farming.
“Normally you would be able to cut weeds and you wouldn’t have to worry about them coming back,” Barnes said. “But because they are growing back so quickly I have already seen people cut them multiple times. It will be interesting to see how it affects farmers harvesting.”