Saturday 4 June 2016
Supposed to be a hot day, so I decided to hike Purisima, possibly the coolest of the preserves. Parked halfway up Kings Mountain road, hiked down through Huddart Park, back up through Phleger Estate to the Kings Mountain volunteer fire station, where I refilled the water bottle. Then along Skyline to the North Ridge entrance.
As well as a garter snake (no photo), interesting and unusual sights included a slime mold on a stump.
Looks like scrambled eggs, doesn’t it!
Not far down the Purisima North Ridge trail, I met Michael, who was a bit unsure what he wanted to do here today, if anything. Turned out he was from Fort Collins, Colorado, taking a day’s break from a week of work, staying at a B&B in Half Moon Bay. We walked and talked for a while; I confirmed his identification of poison oak — probably the single most important thing to do! — and we talked about grades, redwoods and Douglas fir, Audobon birds, and any number of things. Fortunate enough to find another garter snake to show Michael.
Hot enough day that I kept it to 17 miles, 3000 vertical feet — industrial grade, not a killer hike.
Sunday, 5 June
Coming down Kings Mountain Road yesterday, I passed workers out painting brightly coloured arrows on the road, and was reminded that the first Sunday in June is always the date for the Sequoia Century.
I don’t want to add congestion to the roads today, so I decided to visit Pulgas Ridge open space preserve, well away from the century routes, close and convenient, and a place I almost never go. Probably worth a circuit to have a look for bull thistle.
Got there during the coolth of the morning; the sun and heat didn’t really break through until I reached more or less the high point of the outer loop trail, so it worked out well. Short hike, but pleasant.
And the special feature of today’s hike was seeing the lawn mowers in action. My favourite thing!
They eat pretty much anything and everything. It’s only a shame they can’t be turned loose on more of the preserves.