I Went For a Walk In the Woods

I went for a walk in the woods (Fontenelle Forest, to be precise) and a quick visit to the connected raptor rescue, where they rehabilitate birds of prey. (Just birds of prey. Not ducks. Not woodpeckers. Birds of Prey) They also house a number of birds which would not be able to survive in the wild for various reasons. The short-term residents are kept separately, since they’re not supposed to be socialized to love humans, but the long-term birds are out for the public (provided that they aren’t fostering orphan birds, of course).

Now, to be clear… this is one of those places where an annual membership would be much cheaper for regular visits (uhm, actually if two adults in your family go more than twice in a year) and also there are some benefits (such as after hours access) that would be well worth having, if I lived closer.

A hawk. Unreleaseable due to partial amputation of her wing.

Unmatched pair of owls.

Trees.

Trees.

 

More trees.

 

There are even indoor trees! This one is more naturalistic than some bookstore trees I’ve been acquainted with.

The raptor area and some of the trails are wheelchair accessible, as is the main building. (boardwalk-style trails, if that makes a difference to anyone.)

Sometimes, It Really IS the Journey.

Once upon a time, I decided to hike the Ocean-View trail out of Muir Woods. I can’t remember who, if anyone, I was with. Family, maybe, or possibly a friend or two. It’s not the most rigorous trail in the world, and it’s only about three and a half miles long, but if you make it to the end, you’re promised–you guessed it–a view of the Pacific Ocean in all its glory.

It’s a beautiful trail. Redwood country, with a little stream (the site I was just on called it a “river”) about halfway up. And a nice, steady rise in altitude.

Well worth the effort, if you  happen to get out there.

And the day was perfect. Not too hot, and not too cold. More or less Hollywood style hiing up a mountain weather. Despite being in Northern California, we only ran into one nudist the whole way, and it was a small nudist.

But.

Ocean view? Probably not what I’d call a teeny-tiny sliver of slightly not-sky blue peeking out from between two mountains. I think someone had to point it out to me, because I would have missed it.

You were looking down across a deep, green valley, and some of the oldest trees in the world, under a blue sky and a warm sun… Are you sure that’s the ocean? I wasn’t. I’m still not, except that the signs promise it is.

Actually, the most prominent features of the place I’d just spent an hour or two getting to… Were the convenient parking lot and picnic tables just off the main road.