TRAIN ON BRAIN: Though known more as a mountain man thanks to his many books on the Santa Barbara hiking scene, The Santa Barbara Independent‘s Outdoors Editor Ray Ford actually came to UCSB in 1961 as a surfer from El Segundo, and continues to hit the beach as much as possible. It was on the sand a couple years ago at a jam-packed Santa Claus Lane beach that Ford first realized the potential trouble with our railways. “People were haphazardly going across the tracks, and this train just came around the corner,” recalled Ford. “I thought, ‘Wow, this is really dangerous. Something bad is going to happen here.’” Ford’s resulting story about the close encounters between people and trains — and what’s being done to minimize them — can be found here.