September 3, 2013
Just last week I banged my head on a big piece of irony. Don’t know why it didn’t occur to me before, but I was bemused by the fact that for as much as I love the mountains, and given my blog’s name, I live in Alameda, an island, and the flattest town in the Bay Area, possibly Northern California.
Luckily, I don’t have far to drive to satisfy my yearnings for a bit of altitude. Mt. Tamalpais is right across the bay, Mt. Diablo is a ridgeline or two away, and the Sierras are four hours away. I was set to go to Lake Tahoe last week, planning on either a Carson Pass or Desolation Wilderness hike. I was up early on Thursday and made it as far as Placerville before turning back because of the smoke plume blowing north from the Yosemite Rim Fire. Long before reaching the foothills, I saw the high wall of smoke stretching to the horizon.
Kudos, by the way, to all of the firefighters and emergency responders who’ve been putting in long hot days trying to save homes, towns, and the Giant Sequoias. A lot has burned, and the scars will be there for a generation, but there will be regrowth and new life. For today, I just want to share some images from recent local hikes in Marin County.
One of the benefits of the lingering summer fog banks in the Bay Area is that it extends the length of our wildflower season. Even now, in late summer, there are abundant blooms on Mt. Tamalpais and even more so on the trails of the Marin Headlands.