The Trail Companion
Theme: San Francisco Bay Area
My wife Pat and I have kept a Bay Area hiking diary
since 1986, logging the parks we have visited and
particularly noting the wildflowers in bloom. For the
spring 2000 issue of the Trail Companion, we revisited our
logs to find the most reliable locations for a good display
at a predictable time. We also tried to get a good spread
of Peninsula, South and East Bay locations (and we skipped
Edgewood and San Bruno Mountain - they are magnificent, but
everyone writes about them!). I've only mentioned the most
abundant and reliable flowers and locations in the
descriptions - you can assume there are many more to be
found at each of the parks. By Tim Oren.
More spots for great flowers in Los Trancos Open Space
Preserve, Butano State Park, Stevens Creek County Park and
Jasper Ridge. By Geoffrey Skinner.
Sometimes, during a hike in one of the local parks, I
find myself kneeling beside an interesting plant, a
colorful flower or unfamiliar tree, scribbling notes and
drawing crude sketches in hopes of gathering enough
information to identify it when I get home. I'm not
successful very often; if I find anything in any of my
books that resembles the mystery plant, it turns out to be
a species that only grows in salt flats in Nevada. After
one of these exercises in frustration, I find myself
daydreaming about the ideal Bay Area plant guide. By
Although you might not be able to haul these electronic
resources into the field, UC Berkeley's CalFlora project, a
wildflower photography website and a Bay Area wildflower
guide on CD-ROM provide great photos, location tips and
Don't be surprised if on your next hike through Bay Area
trails, one of these long-snouted, grunting animals
approaches you. The wild pig population of the Bay Area is
growing rapidly, and is becoming increasingly more
aggressive with its surroundings. This pig invasion is
leading certain counties to take action on damage control,
and to discuss how to share the land with the beasts.
By Emily Johnson and Geoffrey Skinner.
Go to your closet or your boxes of camping gear-and
count how many items are made of nylon. In my own closet, I
can spot two raincoats, rain pants, wind pants, shorts,
pack covers, several backpacks, various stuff sacks, three
sleeping bags...and that's just for starters. I own a lot
of nylon and appreciate its lightness and versatility. I
consider myself to be environmentally aware, yet the nylon
that is used in most of my outdoor gear is one of the more
environmentally damaging textiles to manufacture. By
We're teaming up with Bay Area Action's Arastradero
Preserve Stewardship Project and Any Mountain for great
events on the two big trail celebrations of the year.
In this issue, new poems from two California poets and
an essay on encounters along the trail at Point Lobos.
- A Note from the Literary
Bello - Devavani Chatterjea-Matthes
a Measured Cup of Warming Brandy - Tim Bellows
Comings and Goings - Christopher Woods
Coming up in The Trail Companion: Long distance
hiking close to home and history along the trails
Eagle Trail in Windy Hill Open Space Preserve to be
repaired this summer...MROSD plans to rebuild the
single-track bypass trail on Alpine Road...City of San Jose
eyes Alum Rock expansion.
Castle Rock Trail reroute completed - thank you to all
our volunteers!...Acorn Trail reroute at Arastradero
Preserve...Thanks for donations and grants...Maps returning
to the Peninsula Conservation Center... Committee For Green
Foothills to share TC office.
California Trail Days/Earth Day 2000 and National Trails
Day events at Arastradero Preserve...Trail maintenance in
Portola Redwoods State Park with Community Impact.
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