Huddart – Purisima


I left the car on Canada road (that’s canYAda) just off interstate 280. In the meadow near the road, two deer. One of them was taking a dump. Had you asked, I would have extrapolated from physical similarity to horses and cows, and said they just dumped as they walked along. Not so: they squat like dogs.

Today’s utterly useless fact!

I walked into Huddart park on Crystal Springs trail. I have done this before, but not for quite a while. Not sure exactly how far it was, so I headed straight up the hill on the Richards Road trail.

Crossed Skyline and went into Purisima Creek Redwoods open space preserve. I was walking down the fire road trail when I heard a hiker ahead of me: “Wow!” What? A big snake? I hurried up.

Not a big snake, but pretty impressive evidence of the geological instability of the Bay area. The trail was closed to horses, probably for fear that the whole hillside could slide down under not very much additional impetus.

I turned off on Craig Britton trail and went across to the Harkins Ridge trail, then down. Stopped along the creek at the bottom to see if I could find crayfish. No, not today. I did find a couple of millipedes, however.

And I discovered that if I used the flash to freeze the motion, I could get some pretty interesting pictures of the standing waves in the creek. Cool! if I do say so myself!

I hiked on further up the Purisima creek trail, discovering a couple of interesting insects along the way.

I am not clear whether this is a carnivorous beetle or not. If so, that aphid is in big trouble.

The west side of the ridge is a distinctly different micro-climate. Duff dampish — you don’t crackle when you walk on it. Ferns thick between the redwoods, and grass and bush elsewhere. When I crossed back over the ridge, I was forcibly reminded of the characteristic micro-climate of the east slope: dry duff and leaves on the ground, ferns quite rare, and no further interesting small animals.

21.7 miles, 4600 vertical feet. I guess that qualifies it as a killer hike.

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