Wednesday, February 10, 2010

New Trails to Explore

During a break in the rain last weekend we headed out to a new park we hadn't been to before. The Sunol Wilderness was a great hike. We followed a creek up to some pretty waterfalls and got to see lots of interesting things along the way.

rainy day

On our way to the park we took a charming back road with lots of old barns. Some obviously closer to urbanity, some more remote.

Urban barn:
barn1

And less urban:
barn2

barn3

Passed a huge flock of wild turkeys. There must have been at least 40-50. I got out to get a closer look at this group. After they gobbled at me a few times I tried gobbling at them. I was totally tickled that everytime I gobbled, they would gobble back at me.

turkey lurkies


Some great trees there. The first hill we passed was spotted with grey Pinus sabiniana. Lovely, ghostly trees.

ghost trees

Later we passed a group of lichen covered Buckeyes I think, (Aesculus californica.)

lichen

The creek was running very well, although judging from the debris in the trees, it had been much higher. The top of the debris was about neck high. Would've been fun to have seen the creek back then.

creek

high water

There were interesting clumps of grass growing in and around the creek. I have no idea what kind of grass they are though. Carex of some sort maybe?

shrumpies

Some really great stones randomly scattered among the more typical ones.

creek rock

creek rock

Love this random blue rock:

blue rock

Here is the beginning of a series of nice waterfalls. Or "cascades" as the ranger that day corrected us. This one has another of those odd blue rocks well placed near the falls.

falls


A few other nice plants out and about that day:

Dichelostemma capitatum
Dichelostemma capitatum

Beautiful, white Platanus racemosa
Platanus racemosa

And on the way home I noticed an old tree gobbling up an ancient
No Trespassing sign. Going, going, gone.

tree, eating sign

2 comments:

  1. Sunol is a great park!

    That no trespassing sign is most likely a San Francisco Department of Water and Power sign. They own the watershed around some of the areas in the park. Hetch Hetchy water flows through there somehow. Not that I ever, ever trespassed on their land mind you.

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  2. Yes, you're right dano. The sign was across from one of the SF Water sites, outside of the park. I have seen photos of the "temple" to water they have. Saw it from the road but gates were locked up tight. I'd love to get up close and see it sometime. I wonder if they ever let the public in there?

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