Shell Ridge Open Space

December 22, 2013
Walnut Creek, CA
Hikers: Cathy, Laura
Distance: 6.3 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,427 ft.

Notice the pretty piece of shell sticking out in the middle.

Shells everywhere! Hence the name Shell Ridge.

Here we go..

Coming back down. The trail got to be a bit precarious. We'll take the trail that was to the left..

We could really use some rain, not just in general, but to wash away all this ugly smog!

So nasty.

This view makes you feel like you are in a foreign land.

Almond tree.

Laura tried an almond; she said at first it was quite bitter, then it had a strong, fresh almond flavor.

So very young.
I remember hearing about their passing.


Fossil Hill, Kovar, Summit Ridge, Indian Creek, Briones to Mt. Diablo, Corral Springs, and Ridge Top, plus a few unnamed..

Briones: We need rain..

December 15, 2013
Martinez, CA
Hikers: Cathy, Laura, Noreen, Denise
Distance: 4.3 miles
Elevation gain: 1,033 ft.

Oh.. the ponds are drying up. :(

Poor little guy. He wasn't looking to healthy.


Second pond - bone dry. 

Alhambra Creek, Spengler, Two unnamed trails.

Briones Regional Park

Round Valley Regional Preserve

December 8, 2013
Brentwood, CA
Hikers: Cathy, Laura, Noreen
Distance: 6 miles
Elevation gain: 1388 ft.

As I was packing for this hike, the temp was 27°. Halfway or so through our hike, it warmed up to be a balmy 37° - it was a chilly day to say the least.


 We saw this building structure on the drive in.

 Icy spot on the footbridge.

 Notice the exposed roots of the trees.

 Ice crystals.

These are the same cows from above - you are unable to see the baby nursing in the photo.

 Looks like a laying wild boar.

 Critter print (or is it dog?). There are no dogs allowed..

Critter print!!!

Look what is peeking over the ridge - our beloved Mt. Diablo. :)

Yes, I actually posted this pic. Laura, when you say "hey", it would be nice if we had time to smile before you took the shot.

 Los Vequeros Reservoir and the Altamont Pass windmills.

The fence prevents us from reaching the reservoir. :(

 Close up of said reservoir and windmills.

 Looks like a petrified waterfall to me. (A stretch, I know..)

 We are thinking this may be the Fox Trail, that leads to Morgan Territory Regional Preserve.

 Interesting.. there are deep slits cut into this rock.


 Frozen creek.

 There were plenty, and I mean plenty, of critter prints on the trails today. :)

 Coyote!!! :)
(Always happy when they are at a distance. Haha.)

 We were bundled up all day long. It was a cold one.

 Hardy Canyon, Miwok, plus two unnamed trails.