Friday, May 23, 2008

Today's Nature Study~Alum Rock

With Yosemite fresh in our blood, we decided to head to our local county park, Alum Rock. I've been going here since I was a girl and luckily we still live very close by. Although there is a fire raging in the Santa Cruz mountains with smoke thick in the air, we went ahead and spent the afternoon hiking and studying the nature around us.

We were very fortunate to see three deer(two does and a young buck~pic of him at the very end). We also saw several varieties of birds..Stellar Jays(pic included), Robins, Woodpeckers, a beautiful white Heron and several smaller ones that I can't name. There were many speckled ground squirrels(I have a shot here of a baby..too cute!) and little red beetles. We also got to observe a brown damsel fly.

So, come along on our little study:

There were an amazing number of Stellar Jays out today. They seemed to be following us, but were not at all easy to capture on camera! This one graciously sat still and let me get this shot.

I wonder, can you see the damsel fly in the leaf debris above? This was a rather chance siting...but I'm sure glad we found it:-)

And here is the baby squirrel. We saw several of them as we walked along the path. So adorable!

And our young beautiful! He was grazing along the path, near the old mineral baths and grottos. His antlers are still velveted and he was only a little startled by us. Not so much that he rushed right off. The girls really enjoyed seeing him and Liam even noticed him.

What a wonderful afternoon we had!

Have a great weekend!


fairmaiden said...

Wow Sommer, I am so proud of you!!! I understand the feeling of doing something out of your comfort zone and actually accomplishing it. It makes the scripture verse "I can do all things through Christ whom strengthens me." more alive doesn't it?

These pictures are magnificent! I am so glad you shared. And I can hear your excitement, it is wonderful. The last time I was in Yosemite was 13yrs. ago. We went camping with our 3 children at the time, whom we're 4, 2, and 5mos. The 5 month old cried all through the night, and the 2 yr. old wet her sleeping bag. It was miserable and we vowed we would never camp with a baby again. We did hike up to Vernal Falls. I didn't make it all the way to the top. I turned around with my 2 yr. old. But my hubby made it to the top with my 4 yr. old son and baby in a baby carrier on his back. I did backpack for 4 days all through Yosemite in my senior year of H.S. We camped on the tops of the mountains and scaled the smooth sides of the mountains. It was very scary and at times I did not know if I would make it back down alive. So, I know how difficult the hike was for you. I am so glad you made it!!!

Simply Heart And Home said...


My husband absolutely loves Yosemite! I've never been but would love to go. Your pictures are so beautiful. Thank you for sharing them with us!