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Thanks David! And spiders are exquisite creatures (why would anyone want to poke them?). I love them especially when they are harmless (The like of black widows gets on my nerves, though).
Looks like a Neoscona Arabesca (or Orb Weaver Garden Spider). These are great girls to have around. They eat lots of bugs like wasps, mosquitos, moths, attorneys, politicians and grasshoppers. They are not harmful to humans and are not aggressive unless you poke them with a stick. The bite from one of these is equivalent to a bee or wasp sting.
Lat: 34.07, Long: -118.45
Spotted on Dec 21, 2013 Submitted on Dec 26, 2013