Yesterday when I was casting about for straws to tease Julie with I was kicking myself for not grabbing some of the huge seed pod fronds from the ornamental grass in the far end of the yard. I couldn’t try it then, because Julie would have been spooked as I would have had to pass him. Today I got one early.
Julie wasn’t there, but Calla was….
At first she wasn’t too sure of what to make of this development, but then the instincts kicked in. Claws out on this one!
There’s a deadly blow for you!
She got a bit tuckered out by the end of it.
I was already pretty tired because I finally managed to finish a hike I’d been planning to do for a while – to get to the end of both of the ‘overlook’ trails on the Oakbrook Overlook trail. I’d gotten pretty far up and out before (this trail starts by climbing up a ridge 6-700 feet high) but since I started walking from home I couldn’t reach the end. I had a false start a few weeks ago, but this time I made it – about 8 1/4 miles in total.
Gus was watching Calla fight with the seed pod from behind me but he didn’t want it himself when I offered it to him.
There are two overlook trails – the first I had almost gotten to the end before. The parts I missed had some dicey sections where the trail was on solid rock without any soil at all. I’d almost thought the trail ended but there were little piles of rock like signposts along the way. This was along a ridge line so you could see the country fall away to the left and right. As it got close to the end there were a few more of these, and it ended in a bare rock area with a 20-30 degree slope. I didn’t see it going on, and I probably would not have gone on if it had. I’m not as spry as all that, and even less so if the hiking stick has nothing to bite into. There were some indentations in the sandstone rock that made reasonable footholds…at least on the way up. On the way back they didn’t seem quite so adequate!
I’m not afraid of heights, but I’ll admit some butterflies when you have to look down the trail instead of up.
The second overlook requires a backtrack and then the trail follows the south face of the ridge that forms the north wall of the Conejo Valley. This was interesting because I used to live a bit south of it, so coming home from work every day I could see this sheer rock ridge ahead. Now I was moving across it like a bug. The trail was fairly wide as it is used to access some power towers that service that area. The final overlook was where the power lines dived down about 45 degrees from a final tower to the houses hundreds of feet below. It kind of reminded me of the Grinch looking down at Whoville.