Getting a paddle in on Lake Chabot

L paddling at Lake Chabot - 1

With temperatures predicted for the 80s, the Adventurers made it a watery adventure today, paddling on Lake Chabot in Castro Valley.

Lake Chabot had been somewhat hiding in plain sight to them until they discovered it on an outing with the kiddos a month or so back. How they had missed it is a bit of a mystery, given that the trails are dog friendly. Maggie tolerates rather than enjoys kayaking, so they left her home today (plus there’s blue green algae bloom that makes the Lake off limits for humans and dogs.)

geese at Lake Chabot - 1

Summer had started at the Lake, but on the water, it was relatively quiet with mainly geese as their companions They explored a couple of coves on the 315 acre lake that were on the other side from where they walked.

It’s a reedy lake in places and they did some exploring to see if they could find where it becomes a stream into Redwood Canyon. They could not.

The only drawback to the day is the long walk from car to put in place and back, but they did it in stages and survived. A perfect way to start warm weather kayaking…

D paddling at Lake Chabot - 1

Paddling/easy/4.2 miles

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It’s all about skate boarding now that the James man is 7

James with skate board instructor - 1The Adventurers headed over to Moraga this afternoon for a BBQ with friends and family to celebrate James’ birthday, which actually was June 2.

They were the elders of the group as son John had gathered together some of the friends he’s worked with over the years. And, of course, Julie, had her two beasties from high school, Julie and Erin. Fun for L to see these folks she’s gotten to know over the past decades. (Could that really be plural?)

James was in his usual outfit of swim trunks and no shoes (at least until he showed off skate board skill learned earlier in the day at his first lesson with Pac at Street Science Skate Shop (thanks John Getze for the great photo because L was at her worse on photos this afternoon).

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Yet another new park, this time Stevens Creek in Saratoga

D and the Mag on bridge at Stevens Creek Park - 1

L continues to be amazed at the fact that she missed the many dog-friendly parks in Santa Clara County during the Cassie years, but the Adventurers are working to get them notched off their hiking list one by one.

The morning it was a hike at the 1,000-acre plus Stevens Creek Park, which started out next to the reservoir of the same name along the Tony Look Trail. Maggie desperately wanted to dip but not only is reservoir off limits to swimming for both humans and animals, there was a steep descent to get to it.

kids playing near Stevens Creek reservoir - 1

About three miles into what D had mapped out to be about a five-mile hike, they realized they were in for a much longer outing if the continued to do the up and down loop. They stopped at a picnic area near the road for water and Cliff bars, hoping to get up enough energy to make the tough climb up to catch the Coyote Ridge trail on the return.

In the end, the took the opportunity to hitch a ride back to the car with some cyclists. Earlier this morning, D had given a cyclist a inner tube who had broken down just beyond the driveway. So it it cyclist pay back day…

Hike/moderate with some good pulls/3.6 miles

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Walk around Menlo Park brings back long ago pool memories

shadowy by Burgess Pool - 1The Adventurers dropped D’s car off at the Chevron station for servicing this morning and decided to walk to breakfast at Tootsie’s near the Stanford Shopping Center.

They wanted to stay off of busy El Camino Real, so dropped down to Laurel. That took them past Burgess Pool, where D once worked during the same period that L worked at the M-A pool.

He reflected on Facebook: “Walking in Menlo Park yesterday morning. Stopped by the “New and Improved Burgess Pool”. Fifty years ago plus, I was a lifeguard and manager at the old Burgess Pool. I hired one of my swimming buddies from Menlo Atherton High School to work as our cashier/locker room attendant. He would occasionally play his guitar during his shifts. From Burgess, for most of my adult life I continued to work in aquatics. My former swimming buddy, named Lindsay Buckingham, continues to play his guitar! The venues, however are more impressive.”

Continuing on Alma, they got to their breakfast destination, Tootsie’s, around the three mile mark, which made for a nice 4.5 mile loop…

Walk/easy/4.5 miles

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Greeting a hot Saturday morning with a walk around Lake Merritt

The Mag and D at Lake Merritt - 1

tree filled with bird's nests - 1The Adventurers had a fundraiser to attend in Piedmont today, so they decided to set out early and walk around Lake Merritt on the way.

L had done this quite a few times when Julie and John lived in a great pre-war apartment just up the hill from the Lake. And while L and D had paddled on the Lake, D had never walked around it.

It was a beautiful, sunny morning – actually hot for Oakland. But there were good shade breaks, great people watching, not to mention lots of interesting architecture to capture their interest. Then there was a tree full of Cormorant nests. Neither had seen anything like it!

They then headed over to the fundraiser for ALS research in support of their Africa traveling companion Mike. Maggie took part in a first for her – walking the red carpet! All dogs got ribbons and treats…

Mag walks the red carpet - 1

Walk/easy/3.6 miles

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Kicking off summer with a Memorial Day paddle in San Mateo

L at San Mateo Parkside park - 1

The Adventurers returned to Parkside Aquatic Park in San Mateo, a place that they’d paddled in once before. The plus is that it’s close by, it’s free and easy to launch and there are restrooms.

D at one of the Tiki places - 1The downside can be that its windy much of the time. But not this morning, when there was nary a breeze and the water for flowing just slightly inland from the Bay (which they aren’t sure this water is actually connected to.)

The went in the opposite direction of the last time they paddled, going along a side of newer homes on the way out and older homes, some of which had been fixed up and some that looked like barely functioned meth labs, on the way back.

Among the sights was a number of Tiki Bars. D posed inside one…

Kayak/easy/3 miles

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On a something different roll, this time to Uvas Canyon

D and the Mag in madrone forest - 1

L and the Mag in oak woodland - 1The Adventurers had a Friday with no commitments, so decided to do a joint activity. Their chosen destination was Uvas Canyon, a lushly wooded park of more than 1,200 acres on the eastern side of the Santa Cruz Mountains. D has heard of it over the years and never been; L went 20 or so years ago during the Cassie era.

It’s a bit of journey getting there with lots of backroad driving, which makes it feel you are even further away from civilization than you are. Just before entering the park, you drive on a one-lane road through Sveadal, which was founded in 1939 by the Swedish American Patriotic League. Most of the cabins are pre-war, given it a time-stamp feel.

waterfall at Uvas - 1Their chosen hike was loop of just over four miles that included a long stretch of up followed by an almost equal distance down. Most of it on well-groomed trails, some of them a bit skinny with a significant drop off. That’s where hiking poles come in handy.

One section vexed L, in particular where the trail crossed Swanson Creek, requiring some boulder hopping, never her strength. She did get to text that her hiking boots are completely waterproof!

The payoff for the day was a series of waterfalls, kind of like being in a small scale Yosemite with lots of cascades in between. Oh, and it rained/sprinkled almost the entire time, which made the madrone trees particularly shiny.

Afterwards they lunched at the Cinnabar Golf clubhouse, because D had heard of it and wanted to check it out. They continued on a back road toward the Almaden section of San Jose, which just happened to take them by a Total Wine store. Of course, they stopped…

moss covered tree roots - 1

Hike/moderate/4.1 miles

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