Sunday, September 23, 2007

Trail Notes

From John Walsh, Paradise Meadow Rover:

New snow on the mountain - certainly a harbinger of winter. Quite beautiful to see. When arriving at Paradise, clouds parted enough providing spectacular views of the mountain. Trees appeared to be "frocked" -- it was quite beautiful. Snow actually on the ground and slush on the trails as you approached Pebble Creek. Trails above Pebble were interesting, new snow covered normal routes so a little dicey up there. Coming down was rewarded with some cool things; actually sat and watched a pika from about 2 feet away, had not had that opportunity before as they usually are pretty elusive; also watched a falcon hunting the meadow. He apparently had very little concern I was there and swooped fairly low over me. The best was as I was standing above the Golden Gate trail, I heard this very pronounced "swoosh ... swoosh ... swoosh" and turned east just in time to be face to face with a very large bird of prey flying directly at me about 10 feet off the ground. He shot like a fighter plane right over my head and dove down the hill with the switch backs. Very cool ...

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