Saturday, 24 September 2016
Today was for a run in the coolth of the morning, then a mid-day event, Mid-Peninsula Open Space District volunteer recognition day, at Ravenswood — Cooley Landing. Sunny, breezy, and I crossed the threshold to a thousand volunteer hours. Considering that I only started in summer 2013, that’s not too bad.
And then in the evening, the annual traditional Oktoberfest hosted by Alex and Sigrid. Nice.
Sunday, 25 September
Supposed to be hot today, so I did a short one, close by, Windy Hill. I could go somewhere cooler, but with far less chance of finding a tarantula. Didn’t find any anyway, but at least I was out there just in case.
As I walked up Betsy Crowder trail, I met a woman with a dog, who told me she had just seen a bobcat near the BC bench. She decided to turn back. I, of course, dug out my camera. No bobcat at the bench, but I found it on Spring Ridge, just below the BC junction. It saw a bunny, which put it into skulking mode. It was happy to let me stand there quietly shooting off photos, but when a couple of trail runners came along, it disappeared into the bush.
On Spring Ridge just below the spring, I found a curious vee of snake trails, only 2/3 across the trail, one much bigger than the other. My interpretation: a medium-size gopher snake making its way across the trail, surprised by (say) a mountain bike. Fast 180 and a scramble back where it came from, this time making a much wider track because it was pushing hard on the dust.
Found a purple star thistle at the top of the hill, and three or four yellow star thistles along Anniversay trail. I had no way to carry them away, so I wrapped a trail map around them, wrote up a note, and left them in the map kiosk at the picnic area, hoping a ranger will collect them.
I came here because the day promises to be hot and unpleasant, but up here along the ridge was quite pleasant. So I detoured to Skyline and back on the top stub of Razorback Ridge trail.
Talked with a runner at the Lost Trail-Razorback Ridge junction, who was consulting his map, wondering whether Eagle Trail was paved. Always glad to get a question whose answer I know.
As I came back down from Skyline, I met another visitor at the same junction. This one was hoping to be able to go to Skyline and connect to some trail there that would allow him to make a wider loop back to Willowbrook parking. Told him he could connect via Crazy Pete’s road, but he would have to walk on Skyline to get there. He wondered why the Bay Area Ridge Trail sign pointed that way if there was no connector trail. Fair question.
Other wildlife: a garter snake, too shy to photograph.
Back at the parking lot, I saw two hang gliders on the adjacent field, two more in the air. By the time I got over there, a third had landed, but I got a chance to photograph the fourth. They thanked me for being on the volunteer project that put the chain at the top; they say it works well. Good to hear.
Jacky says I have far too much fun. She would know!