Sunday, December 29, 2013

Tower Hawks

Afternoon rollabout Yesterday...Mile 6 to 3 and return...Kingfisher about...Hawks at Talbert and Hawk's Course...quiet quiet, and on return, nearing the Grid, I checked Hawk's Perch thereabout, and disappointed, but just with that thought, Hawk, maybe Hawk I'd seen at Talbert, flew overhead on a direct line for Tower where I could see Crows mobbing...Hawk shooed off Crows, and perched atop...when I rolled closer I could see second Hawk below...sunny Decembersummer, windy...River hereabout is like a Hawk Habitat of curious Invention!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Early Sightings...

The sand of the beach began to be cold to our bare feet; the frogs set up their croaking in the

marshes, and one solitary owl, from the end of the distant point, gave out his melancholy note,

mellowed by the distance.....

Two Years Before The Mast
Richard Henry Dana


The next day he (Peale) was entranced by an American Dipper he watched bobbing up and down on rocks at the streams edge, then actually walking on the bottom where the transparent water was half a foot deep, and bobbing and popping back to the surface without any apparent effort. He became so engrossed that he forgot to collect the bird.


California's Frontier Naturalists
Richard G. Beidelman


I was in Bakersfield all last week, visiting my sister, and had this book along, which I had plenty of time to read while to trying to shake off a cold, which I needed to do so I could run up and down the basketball court tooting my referee whistle today and absorbing the usual, which I needed to do, too!..I guess...I got the book after doing a google search of Haenke, whose tale I learned of in the Crespi Diary book...actually, it was a sixteenth century drawing of Kelp and Sea Otters reproduced in the Crespi book that led to a lot of searches for these old exploring expeditions...we went to the Moon with cameras, and finally a geologist...these old expeditions took along best expertise of the time, which included artists...I'm trying to compile a timeline and list of these artists...I left the Diary with my sister, it will be my book to read on future visits, along with viewing the remaining 53 episodes of "Chuck"....anyway, did Muir know of Haenke?...brb...well, a bio movie has been made of Muir and one of the movie maker's is named Haenke, so search becomes problematic...I'm guessing Muir took botany classes before leaving off from college, and Haenke's adventures would have been familiar...Haenke has an arc, and Muir likely wanted to take Haenke's arc...anyway, this one post may be added to of the little used features of blogs, is that you can put blogs inside blogs, by just adding to one post, (or 'thread')...drawback is that once past the current day, posts are no longer 'seen' by the spiders and added to those reading blogs, keeping current with their morning coffee, will simply miss authors' updates and adds and whatnot to earlier posts...anyway, anyway, it has been windy the last couple days, not unlike the day I posted to the blog the quote from Dana...  Dana by the way, was with Peale, but it is the other Dana, the one Mount Dana is named after, which I thought was named after Richard Henry, and was disappointed to learn otherwise after climbing it!...  But Richard Henry figures in book...I'm reading along in book, and one of the naturalists is finding passage on a sister ship of the Pilgrim  back to Boston, and I'm thinking, "is this Dana's time frame?"...and indeed it was...the naturalist, Thomas Nuttall...the blog has a couple Nuttall Woodpecker sightings...many of the critter names are from these early naturalists...and some mountains too...the Frontier Naturalists has about it 'early sightings', as it is peppered with singular sightings, many of which I'd like to post up...this book and the Diary are must haves for anyone's library who are out about with camera, binocs, loop...

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Featherly Park is at Mile 26, and Yesterday morning I thought to park thereabout, and continue on the Bike Path...but I found no day use parking, and the park gated, and it's private...apparently, this Park went from being public to being managed by private, so, I went further along, and parked Silver on a bluff overlooking Green River Golf Course, where I played golf many times with pop, and peddled back to Mile 26, Gypsum Canyon...this section of Path has just recently been paved, and is still being landscaped, and up slope some from the River, which has narrowed, and is right beside the Freeway, which makes the contemplation while rolling, the word, DIN! is really loud, and one wonders how here, anywhere in the urbanscape motorcar rolling din, Owl could hear Mouse!...anyway, on the return to Silver, I thought to then continue, but the Path ends pretty much at Green River Road where it passes over the Freeway...thereabout one can see Prado Dam...pic up...there is a way to go along residential streets and reach the next section of Path along the River, which looks to be near 15 near Norco can go back over the Freeway at Serfas, and then, I don't know...I rolled about looking, and ended up at Prado Park...a large mowed lawns park with Lake and rvs and athletic fields...sat awhile, snacked, got clip for sometime--Blue Heron almost catching was heating up, so returned...I keep studying out how the Trail goes on google maps--Norco to Colton looks to be the remaining section of the Bike Path...sunny hazy cool to hot...I was going to title this post, Dead Rabbit Hills, as one reaches the first uphill hereabout, there's three in a row, and on the top of the first was an rk rabbit on the Bike Path, which I couldn't fathom...rk hawk and two rk raccoons at Prado Park...I'm finding that once I get off the freeways, and thankfully back home, pohono, I feel I've escaped with my skin!...

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Edge Hawks

A Mid-Morning rollabout yesterday...I was counting up Hawks perched on the far side edge, four or five, and then thought to check the near side...stretched up to look over and along the other side of the chain link, and Hawk was just a few feet away...a curious feature of the fence is that looking along its length it's opaque, so when everyone, walkers, joggers, cyclists....photog...approach, they just don't see Hawks perched on the edge, or Hawks us!, until right across in view, and that is such a brief span of time as one passes, that Hawks are unperturbed...unless Dogs come along too...then Hawks fly right up!...couldn't id small Hawk in flight...Kites at Kites' Perch....Buzz Bird on Pole took a bit to discern!...sunny warm blue...and today too, and too hot to walkabout San Joaquin Preserve, where I finally found the Duck House, and picked up schedule for Xmas Count walks...sat awhile...sighted Harrier in flight...White Pelicans about...

Friday, December 13, 2013

Mile 20 to Mile 26

A morning rollabout...parked Silver at Yorba Park...River hereabout is almost Riverlike!...and further along, where the Path turns in a bit to go along residential streets, one can look over what the River must have looked like throughout it's length at one time--a wide flat shrub and tree covered plain...crossing over at Gypsum Canyon one reaches Featherly Park...sighted Redshoulder thereabout, but no pic...most Birds were at Yorba section...Canada Geese are all along the reach from Anaheim Stadium to Yorba Park...where all the Trees and Shrubs were was quiet quiet...Scrub Jays, and Hawk, Redtail, so large I thought Golden Eagle!, on Light Pole reach I'll park Silver at Featherly Park..have to study out how Path goes there, as was told much of it continues through Town...sunny warm clear with some wispy clouds...lots of clips, and on them the very loud Riverside Fwy...for sometime...walker on Path gave me headsup that Coyote appears now and then...Finch and Hummingbird at Featherly...Little Bird, Warbler?, on return at Yorba...Harrier, Cooper's, Kestrel, all at Yorba at beginning...Redtail pics and clips then too...for sometime...Path popular hereabout to walkers, joggers, school cross country atheletes, drophandle bicyclists, but I've yet to see on any of the rolls, another photog!...another much-change from the Valley!...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

July 27, 1769

This day in history...


We set out early in the morning--it must have been six-o'clock; cloudy, very overcast with fog--from here at the two small Saint Pantaleon Springs, following a due northeastward course over this far-reaching plain that we started upon yesterday, all of it level, very grass-grown soil almost all of which had been burnt off by the heathens.

from Alan K. Brown's translation


When I transcribe, copy, I can only remember-carry about one sentence, so it takes awhile, and rather than transcribe all, I looked about on web for Crespi's diary...this site has some of it, and others, and somewhat different translations!  I'm reminded of Graves going over how translations in poetry are often awry, or at odds!,+1769+Diaries


the 28th

Fray Juan Crespi Diary About seven in the morning we set out, continuing our way to the northwest along the skirts of the mountains which we have on the right, to the north, and after traveling a league and a half we came to the banks of a river which has a bed of running water about ten varas wide and half a vara deep. It is not at all boxed in by banks. Its course is from northeast to southwest, and it empties through this place, according to the judgment of those who sailed to the bay of San Pedro. It apparently has its source in the range that we have in sight on the right, about three leagues from the road that we are following. The bed of the river is well grown with sycamores, alders, willows, and other trees which we have not recognized. It is evident from the sand on its banks that in the rainy season it must have great floods which would prevent crossing it. It has a great deal of good land which can easily be irrigated. We pitched camp on the left bank of this river. On its right bank there is a populous village of Indians, who received us with great friendliness. Fifty-two of them came to the camp, and their chief told us by signs which we understood very well that we must come to live with them; that they would make houses for us, and provide us with food, such as antelope, hares, and seeds. They urged us to do this, telling us that all the land we saw, and there was certainly a great deal of it, was theirs, and that they would divide it with us. We told him that we would return and would gladly remain to live with them, and when the chief understood it he was so affected that he broke into tears. The governor made them a present of some beads and a small silk handkerchief, and in gratitude the chief gave us two baskets of seeds, already made into pinole, together with a string of beads made of shells such as they wear. I called this place the sweet name of Jesus de los Temblores, because we experienced here a horrifying earthquake, which was repeated four times during the day. The first, which was the most violent, happened at one in the afternoon and the last one about four. One of the heathen who were in the camp, who doubtless exercised among them the office of priest, alarmed at the occurrence no less than we, began with frightful cries and great demonstrations of fear to entreat heaven, turning to all the winds. This river is known to the soldiers as the Santa Ana.

from web site


Brown's translation has the Spanish original set side by side, and it is more extensive than the excerpts at the web site.  And it is charming to read!  Back then, I would have been able to see the Indian Village, and Portola Expedition from where I presently live, and have for most of my life.  "very overcast with fog"...a june-gloom summer morning, I'd say!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

On The Edge

"He's on the edge all the time..."...Hawk had been perched, and dropped to the River, and I had missed the pic...drop handle bike rider had stopped, waited for me to catch up, and tried to give me heads up, but I missed the pic...Hawk flew to the other side of the River, and perched on the edge of the Containment Wall, which hereabout by Hawks' Course is vertical, but that's not the pics up...that was later, as I did get pic further along, Hawk perched on the near edge, and again on the far edge,  and again on return on the far edge!...and Kingfisher too, as I have often seen, but this first time to see Hawk perched so...Kingfisher caught fish, clip for sometime (I have pics of nearly all eating!)......Hawk on Tall Towers clip for sometime... Hawk on Tall Tower was at start of roll, just past Moon Park, and after sighting Kestrel perched at Kestrel's favorite spot, near mile 6...and Blue Heron, Juvenile?, where I have seen Heron on every roll, in the Channel...Tide was out, and  Long Legs, Ducks,  Egret, and as always, Coots...Redtail call at Talbert Preserve, and sighted but no pic... Redtails in the Course Kites though this time...Buzz Birds about... I always see at least one....and Crows, Sparrows, Phoebes, Pigeons, Starlings, lots...I'm going to have to just sit awhile here and there to sight Little Birds, which are hidden in foliage...the Path is landscaped extensively in a strip with Native Plants, and good hiding for Little Birds...Hummingbirds I always hear here and there...I rolled almost to the Pond, but Fence has been put up, dredging and maintenance work in progress now on the East side...on return, Hawk perched in interesting Tower (they're an overhead calligraphy!), after pic and putting camera away, looked up to see Hawk floating low overhead and to the far side, thought 'cool'. and finished putting camera in pouch, looked up, and Hawk perched on self same Grid Railing as on last Thursday, and thought 'that's really cool'...pic up...sunny, cloud banks in the distance, but clear overhead, and cool...drop handle bike riders are whooshing by from behind and from in front all the time...kinda problematic...going slow I kinda wobble, and make sudden stops...there's a ten mile speed limit...we're even up!...oh, and Merlin at Merlin's favorite perch, nearabout Hawks' Course, Mile 4....

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Santiago Creek

Santiago Creek is a tributary to the Santa Ana River...and cemented too...last week I rolled along the Creek from Hart Park to the Mall...about a mile...and today from Hart Park to the Reservoir that looks to be in an old mining pit for sand...the Bike Path pretty much ends at Collins, about 3.5 miles, judging from the markers, from the Mall, I think!'s kind of a tangle...the Path should connect with the Santa Ana River Path, but private property with stubborn private owners intervenes...a stretch blocked there of maybe a couple miles...when I reached the Pit at Collins, I didn't know it was there, and sighting Hawk drop from a wire across the Street, I thought to find Hawk in a low depression...peering over the fences, I was reminded of the Arizona Meteor Crater with Water and Mono Lake's Seagulls!...and wherever Hawk went was like a hundred feet down!...studying the Map I see I was short of the very end of the Path, so that for sometime...a quiet quiet Path...thought was to find Bike Path that would take one to Irvine Park and avoid Surface Streets...on the return, I hopped in Silver and drove back, and tried to find that route, and too, route to Saddleback...Saddleback can be hiked, a dirt road, and maybe trails, and for sometime...remarkable that I've never hiked Saddleback, but the Foothills, except when briefly green in early Spring, are a bit like a buff colored dog with mange!...I rolled all the way to O'neill Park, and asked for directions to Saddleback, and so now know where the start is--one needs a hiking permit...the Roads hereabout, Silverado, Trabuco, Modjeska, are all very familiar, but the traffic is hectic, very unlike the country drives in my TR4 when one could putter about in Walter Mitty fashion!...there is a good bike lane on Santiago Canyon Road, and maybe for sometime, but the countryside is very quiet...overnight camping at O'neill, so maybe sometime I can study this out for a few days...warm hazy cloudy light breeze...Portola has been an interest for a long time, a remarkable expedition...awhile back I found Crespi's diary in the GG Libray...the volumes were sundamaged from sitting on shelves near the windows, and never opened...I would read them sitting on the step stool, as I often read in Libraries!...and looking for this, I find:

A description of distant roads: Original journals of the first expedition into California, 1769-1770 Hardcover
Juan Crespí (Author)
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Sunday, December 1, 2013

Mile 12 to Mile 20


First three pics from Yesterday's roll--Mile 6 to Mile 4....last two pics are from the Donut Shop Pond (Kid's Haven)...thereabout sighted Hawk while inside--outside tables were occupied by the older guys...Donut Shop routine has been to sit outside, watch traffic, and contemplate over pastry and coffee..."A few plants, a little water, that's all they need..." donut shop owner's observation of the nearby Pond wildlife...I had thought to roll out Santiago Creek, but crossing the River on Chapman the view was that 'the mountains look so close!' view that so cal is famous for, and there is place to park on Chapman by whopper, so diverted...Santiago Creek for neartime...I thought this section, from 10 to 20, would be quiet quiet, but on the contrary...a little water, a few plants...the River bottom hereabout isn't cement, but gravel sandy, and in wide staircase steps, and from what I can tell, some Water is here yearlong, and maybe the recent bit of rain added, but there was plenty...and lots of Birds!...and the neat thing is, I can scramble down the Levies, and get very close, unlike being cooped up in car at the Preserves...and this section is close by home, so instead of being a one time looksee like I thought, it will become a routine rollabout....first Osprey pics were near Mile 18...and I just missed getting clip of Osprey diving and catching Fish...had been wondering if there were Fish....and on return, sighted second Osprey feeding, not sure on what...on return too, Warbler was on the Path, just sitting, not feeling well I think...need to carry some kinda critter rescue gear, as backyard at home has plenty room for to make a recovery place...sunny novembersummer light breeze...I reached Imperial Hwy, and was a bit weary!...the pic with Hawk perched on the Grid Support was the pic I missed when Hawk dropped to catch something on previous roll, and Second Redtail in flight drew me to the pic...watercolor painting class instructors, yes, plural!!, used to add little birds in flight to their Half Dome paintings as a highlight...hmmph..but there's something to it I guess, as a very small highlight lends scale, and drama of a sort...Ducks in the Pond were circling, likely over a bottom inlet making an upwelling...Seagulls do this on Mono Lake...and Ducks in a Row pic a new favorite!