I slept in a tiny bit today and got up about 7:30 am. It was foggy outside but not too chilly. I worked on my journal and blog a little bit, had some breakfast and coffee, and then headed about 9:00 to the Cosumnes River Preserve.
I was proud of myself: I was able to traverse a whole loop of the trail that I wasn’t able to before, and ended up walking a little over three miles. It took me along the railroad trestle – where there wasn’t really a lot to see. Before I got to that loop, though, I was able to get some photos of things I’d been specifically looking for: like the tree covered with racks of white oyster mushrooms. I also saw a chubby squirrel gathering leaves from the ground in her mouth and took them up into a tree to add to her nest. I then saw another squirrel doing a “ninja” crouch on a branch, trying to make herself invisible… Some of the blackberry vines were still berry-ing… I was actually looking for the red-orange toadstools that were supposed to be growing along the river at the preserve, though, and I didn’t find them until the very part of the trail. I turned one over to get a picture of the gills and it was surprisingly super-slimy! There were also all of these little black nematodes crawling all over it. Ick! Hah!
Elsewhere, I saw scrub jays, ducks, geese, what I think was a female meadowlark, and a red-tailed hawk. On the way out of the preserve I stopped on Desmond Road to look at the flooded areas there (where the sandhill cranes usually hang out.) There were tons of geese in there – mostly White-Fronted Geese and Snow Geese – and something spooked them while I was watching them and they all took off in this huge cloud of noise and feathers. I got a little bit of that on video…
While, I was walking, I saw this guy come in wearing cammo gear and a huge backpack. When I got closer to the river, I could hear gunshots, and then the guy came walking out again. I figured: either he’d killed his girlfriend or he was poaching… The walking while for photos every few second along the way made the three-plus miles take me about 3 hours, and that wore me out. So I headed back home.