When a man of 91 is downright cantankerous and has been on his land longer than most everyone else has been alive, he wastes no time speaking his mind.
The grapevines needed to be covered. The last of the tomato harvest came to a halt. A corn maze turned to mud. The ink ran on a "Pray for Rain" sign in an orchard of dead citrus trees.
Beneath this small farm town at the end of what's left of the Kings River, the ground is sinking.
As investigators arrived Wednesday to determine the cause of a fatal air tanker crash at Yosemite National Park, officials temporarily grounded the Cal Fire airplane fleet and rescuers retrieved the pilot's body from a steep canyon.
On a patch of dirt at the boundary of Yosemite National Park on Wednesday, the body of the pilot who died when his air tanker crashed during the firefight the day before was transferred from the care of the park to his own agency.
The air tanker pilot who died in a crash at Yosemite National Park on Tuesday had a 13-year record of fighting wildfires from the air in California, officials said.
The grandmother sat outside in her Sunday best next to a house with peeling paint, her canned iced tea resting on top of a washing machine that didn't work. She'd been without running water for four months.
It has been a summer of foreboding in the mountain communities near Yosemite National Park.