Finally – a cool and flat walk along San Francisco Bay

Wave Organ - 1

Out with the heat. And out with the steep. The Adventurers and the Mag had had enough. Yes, they’d gotten a little break during the Mavericks jaunt last Sunday, but that wasn’t exactly flat.

Today was. They headed up to the City to see something L had only vaguely heard of and D had never heard of, the Wave Organ that’s located on a manmade jetty near the St. Francis Yacht Club. It was created in 1986 by Exploratorium artists-in-residence (when the Exploratorium was nearby). Explains the website about the Wave Organ:

“The installation includes 25 organ pipes made of PVC and concrete located at various elevations within the site, allowing for the rise and fall of the tides. Sound is created by the impact of waves against the pipe ends and the subsequent movement of the water in and out of the pipes. The sound heard at the site is subtle, requiring visitors to become sensitized to its music, and at the same time to the music of the environment.”

Mag in the Bay - 1

It is recommended to come at high tide which the Adventurers missed by about two hours. They heard not a sound and found the site a bit forlorn with weeds between the PVC pipes and concrete. But they’d paid a visit, finally.

The headed back along the Bay Trail along Chrissy Field where The Mag got to take a number of dips along the way both coming and going. The area is always super filed with off leash dogs and their owners or dog walker companions. Today it was also jam-packed with tourists from around the world on rental bikes, some undoubtedly just pedaling to Fort Point and others making the more arduous journey across the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito.

It was a good day, one that featured fog coming and going. Yes, finally a cool day. One that was very pretty as well…

Walk/easy/4.2 miles

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A return to the heat – and the steep – with Tilden Park hike

Mag and D on ridge top at Tilden_vert - 1

The Adventurers have been trying to “try some place new” most Tuesdays. Today, D suggested Tilden Park and plotted a hike that he did warn would have some steep stretches.

Mag and D on trail at Tilden_vert - 1An attraction to heading to Berkeley and that park was that temps were forecast to be in the mid-70s, cooler than the mid-Peninsula. Evidently not wanted to feel “left out of the heat spell,” temps were already in the low 80s when they set out on a hike that not only had some mini butt kicker steep places but the trails were often in full sun and strewn with lots and lots of walks.

L and The Mag complained. The four-legged hardy friend finally said “I’m done,” and D had to carry her for stretch. L just limped along.

That’s the bad news. The good news was absolutely gorgeous 365 degree views. And in places, you felt like you were high in the mountains not in the middle of an urban area.

They’ll be back when it’s cooler as the only explored a small section of a park that’s spreads into Oakland and Orinda as well as Berkeley.

Fun facts: The park opened in 19376 and is home to a Herschell-Spillman merry-go-round as well as a steam train. The latter L had written with Gracie when she was young…

Hike/moderate with some steep climbs/4.45 miles


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Out of the heat and out of the steep with coast side hike

Mag and D on trail - 1

New trail signs at at mavericks hike - 1The Adventurers returned to the Coast today and specifically the hike along the bluff above Mavericks that they last hiked in December when they were there for L’s birthday.

Knowing that the Coast would be a popular Sunday destination, they went early to beat the crowds and largely encountered locals with their dogs. It was a sunny but windy day, about 20 degrees cooler than Menlo Park.

The hike was in distinct contrast to the Friday hike that went up, up, up and was hot, hot, hot. The bluff trail has a few easy up and downs, just enough to make it interesting.

They noted some new trail markers which weren’t there in December. They did their usual loop combined with a walk to the beach where Maggie got to zoom, zoom, zoom…

Hike/easy/3.25 miles

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A butt-kicking, three-mile hike on a hot day in Saratoga

Mag finds a creek - 1

The headline says it all. The Adventurers continued their “try something new” and journey south to Sanborn Park in Saratoga. It’s a lushly wooded park of close to 3,500 acres in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

D watches Mag take a dip - 1It’s main claim to geologic fame is that the San Andrea Fault cuts diagonally through the park. Lore has it that during the 1906 earthquake, the Lake Ranch Reservoir “shook like a horse emptied much of its water” and that some streams changed courses.

They didn’t hike near the Reservoir, which turned out to be a good decision as another hiker told them the lake was almost dry as repairs were being made.

It was already toasty when they started out. The good news was that the trail was almost entirely shady. Thank goodness as the first half mile up is a category 5 climb, meaning steep, steep, steep. The good news for Maggie was that there were fountains she could lay in and, even better, a large stream to get even wetter.

They hiked up the Sanborn Trail for about a mile and a half, turning around at a little circle, and heading back towards the Peterson Trail, which they took downhill. It was just a steep going down and the going was slow. The finished the hike on the San Andreas Trail, which leveled off.

Their reward was a good lunch at the Big Basin Cafe in Saratoga…

Hike/moderate to difficult due to steepness/3 miles

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Taking their judging duties seriously at Chili cook off

D and L at SCRA_070418 - 1

This 4th of July found the Adventurers where they were for part of last 4th of July, at SCRA judging the chili competition.

This year their job was harder – and easier. Alas, there were only three entries by the time it came to count up the people’s choice and make their selection. A fourth entry arrived a few minutes later.

But as it was last year, there was a bit of stuffing of the ballot box by friends of one young girl whose mother had made the chili.

Now it’s kick back time with the neighbor…

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Two iconic photos from fun stay at Evergreen Lodge

James in pool tube - 1

Grace with marshmallow - 1The kiddos got a little zip lining in after breakfast today before the long journey down the mountain, stopping at A&W in Oakdale for root beer floats and some lunch.

Looking through the photos, chose these two to sum up the stay…

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Day to kick back and enjoy Evergreen Lodge

Spider web fun - 1

Zip Line fun - 1After the big outing to Carlon Falls yesterday, today was a day to kick back and enjoy all that Evergreen Lodge has to offer.

For the kiddos, that meant lots and lots of zip-line, spider web and pool fun followed by after dinner bingo that yielded ice cream treats.

Tomorrow will be head down the hill time…



Pool fun - 1

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