Over 500 miles of trails

Someone said that there are over 500 miles of trails in Marin County. I'm going to hike all of them. Want to hear more? Read on...

Location: Woodacre, California, United States

Well, I hike, obviously. I read, without retaining, lots of stuff but mostly classic and contemporary fiction, history, and science. I look at birds and plants. I play my guitar far less than I ought, and watch movies far more. I like to ask people questions, but only if they ask me questions in return. I aspire to honorable behavior and am mostly successful. I'm on the cusp of a career change, with bird research in my past/present and academic librarianship in my future. Occasionally I bust out and cook six course gourmet meals for my friends; for some reason it's always six and never seven or five. Enough about me. What about you? Stranger or friend, drop me a line!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

This past Tuesday I went on a solo hike in the Palomarin area of Point Reyes Nat'l Seashore. It was a long, but pretty mellow, hike... 11.2 miles but nothing too steep or gnarly.

I started from the parking lot of the Point Reyes Bird Observatory, took their little nature trail (which is rather overgrown... I'm not sure if it's just cause it's springtime or if they've stopped maintaining it) back out to the road, and from there picked up the Ridge Trail, which I followed up (strangely) the ridge for around 5 miles until I reached the Lake Ranch trail, which led back down toward the coast. The highlight of my hike was along this trail... a little tiny bomber went buzzing past me and landed in the trail, at which point I saw that it was in fact a fledgling winter wren clearly just learning to fly. He could make it about 10 feet before coming to ground again, and I watched him as he progressed forward and finally made it off the trail in four or five stages. It all looked rather tiring for him and I felt bad, but a parent was calling nearby so I felt sure that he would be fed and cared for once I left the area, which I quickly did.

Lake Ranch dumped me onto the Coast Trail, which if I had taken north would have led me to Double Point, which is apparently splendiferous, though I've never been (I shall have to go at some point). I took it south back toward my starting point to complete the loop, enjoying views of the coastal bluffs and Palomarin beach as I hiked.

I took no pictures... felt like looking at the world through my own eyes rather than the eyes of the camera that day.

So this Dixon trail issue? I read about it in the Point Reyes Light. It would be a shame if the public lost access to a trail of such length that's been in use since the 20's, but at the same time its hard on the owners to dictate to them how their land must be used. And then, of course, as it always is, the spectre of eminent domain has been raised... can anyone really justify seizing somebody's land for the sake of recreation? It's controversial enough when we talk about seizure for the sake of improving people's livelihoods or increasing a town's economic viability. Has anyone talked about the possibility of rerouting the trail? I didn't see anything about this in the article, though I was reading in the john and so was perhaps less attentive than I ought to be.

Landowners' rights aside, I suppose I had better get out there while I still can, as noted in a previous comment by aphotoaday


Blogger TJIC said...

Thanks for keeping the blog up to date; I really enjoy reading it!

3:25 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

Thanks, Trav... good to know you're still reading.

10:39 AM  
Blogger ngvrnd said...

Me too! I particularly like the macro shots of plants. Please don't stop!

5:13 PM  
Blogger Kelly said...

Whozzat? That you, Nick?

Bad news, whoever you are. The digital camera went to Alaska with Victor. Maybe I'll have him send some Alaska pictures and post them to my blog pretending they're from my hikes. That'll get you, you suckers.

9:06 PM  
Blogger AphotoAday said...

Hi Kelly,
I got inspired when I read this post earlier in the week, so today, Friday, I got out there and had a nice walk on the Coast Trail as far as Bass Lake... I wanted to continue on to Alamere Falls and Double Point, but it had already been sprinkling and the weather was not showing any signs of improvement, so I turned around... But it was a GREAT hike, and I hadn't been out there for about 20 years... Got some nice wildflower photos -- the morning-glories look like they are at their peak right now, and of course I the indian-paintbrush is making a bold statement... Lots of quail, and a few pairs of mallards in the ponds...
But wow, you hiked up on the Ridge Trail, and then back on Lake Ranch? You call that "not terribly challenging"? Just a look at that route on the map wears me out, but I sure would like to try that some day... Some day I would like to actually get to Alamere Falls, and of course, Pelican and Crystal Lake... I have a geologist friend who tells me that those lakes were formed by ancient earthquakes that hemmed-in the streams...
Anyway, thanks Kelly for the inspiration...
Yours truly, Don and Kitty

4:20 PM  

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