Rhus Ridge & Black Mountain Trails (Rancho San Antonio)

June 19, 2016
I noticed that iNaturalist doesn't have many observations for the Black Mountain and Upper Chamise Trails, so I thought those would be good places to explore and record some data.

I hiked the Rhus Ridge and Black Mountain Trails for the first time today. I’ve been hiking at Rancho San Antonio for 16 years, but I’ve never tried these trails. Wow – what I’ve been missing!!! The scenic overlooks are breathtaking.

My best sighting of the morning was a king snake sunning himself. I’ve only seen two other snakes at Rancho in all the years I’ve been hiking there. I also saw another snake – probably a garter snake – that slithered out of sight too quickly for me to get a good look, much less a picture. There were dozens of lizards on the trail. Most of them were probably Western fence lizards, but I think two of them were whiptails (one had a blue head).

I saw the following wildflowers: orange sticky monkey flowers, red cardinal catchflies, chamise with white blooms, pink honeysuckle, toyon in bloom, golden yarrow, common deerweed, red Indian paintbrushes, manzanitas with bright red galls, pearly everlasting, ocean spray, wild roses, wild buckwheat, a red cobwebby thistle, western columbines, orange pimpernel, and a gorgeous butterfly mariposa lily.

I also saw a tiny bird’s nest in the chamise, a dusky-footed woodrat ‘s den/nest, 7 big scrub jays, Steller’s jays, dark-eyed juncos, and 2 chipmunks. There was a lot of bobcat and fox scat on the trail, but no coyote or mountain lion scat.

It was a great hike. I started out at first light (6am) and finished up 5 hrs later. Not too bad for an old lady stopping every few feet to take pictures. I'm glad I did this climb in the cool morning hours, and not in the heat of the day.

Publicado el junio 21, 2016 01:39 MAÑANA por truthseqr truthseqr

Observaciones

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Falsa Coralillo del Noroeste (Lampropeltis californiae)

Observ.

truthseqr

Fecha

Junio 19, 2016 a las 10:35 MAÑANA PDT

Descripción

This is only the 3rd snake I've seen at Rancho San Antonio in my 16 years of hiking there (probably because I always hike first thing in the am). I was so excited to see this guy! And he was kind enough to stay still so I could take pictures of him :)

Comentarios

What a beautiful king snake. The last one I saw was February 2015 behind my house.

Publicado por dominic hace más de 7 años

Yes, I felt honored to see this guy.

Publicado por truthseqr hace más de 7 años

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