Allens Hummingbird and Twinberry, Photo by Don Moseman

Un-Discovering SF Bay: Hiking Sweeney Ridge from Sneath Lane

From Park E-ventures, April 2013

I want to tell you about one of the last great places to see the Bay Area landscape as it might have looked a few months prior to European discovery in the fall of 1769: shortgrass prairies and coastal scrub, native habitats with very little disturbance.

Ironically, the ridge now known as Sweeney Ridge was also the place where the Gaspar de Portola and his men scaled the grassy hills from the west and became the first Europeans to look out over one of the great bays of the planet. This hike, secreted in a quiet corner of the Golden Gate National Parks, is on the east side of Sweeney Ridge, starting at the Sneath Lane trailhead.

I like to do what I call the “Un-discover San Francisco Bay Hike.” Starting at the Sneath Lane gate, it is a mere 1.5 miles and some 600 feet to the top of this eastern face. As you walk, imagine rolling back the carpet of time, and focus your attention on the plants to start. There are big shrubs everywhere: coyote brush, bush lupine, coffeeberry, coastal sage, and twinberry.  These are the outer face of coastal scrub habitat, the woody scaffolding that creates supports for vines, like wild cucumber and Dutchman’s pipevine.

When I was young, I squirmed my way under some Sweeney Ridge coyote brushes just to see if I could, and to see what was there in the mysterious coastal scrub understory. What I found were some gorgeous plants—trilliums, irises, shooting stars, paintbrush, and the fragrant ground-running mint vine known as yerba buena. There was also a lot of poison oak, so let’s just say I didn’t try that again.

Coastal scrub’s modest dimensions provide cover for many animals, including striped skunks, gray foxes, and bobcats. Deeper in, it hosts a rich diversity of birds, though many are versed in the fine art of camouflage. Your best counter-maneuver is to learn and listen carefully for their songs.

The unquestionable mayor of Coastal Scrub in the Bay Area must be the Wrentit, a small gray bird with tons of character. Wrentits are unique to the California-Oregon coastal belt, and one of its most insistent singers. Males and females both sing the “bouncing ball” call, a one-note series of whistles that can be mastered quickly by most humans.

Other scrub birds to watch for are Bewick’s Wrens, Western Scrub-Jays, Allen’s and Anna’s Hummingbirds, and my personal favorite, the California Thrashers.

California Thrashers are cousins of the Mockingbird, told by their similarly chattering songs that include double phrases, but I like them for their ground-racing style. The California Thrasher has also an impressive sickle-shaped bill, an effective probe for freeing larval bugs from their burrows.

As you reach the top, turn your attention to the sky. Sweeney Ridge is the last northern bit of the Santa Cruz Mountain range, a 100-mile, longitudinal ridge that assists the northbound flights of migrating raptors in the spring. If you put in some time, you might even detect the flow of Red-tailed, Sharp-shinned, and other hawks above the ridgetop’s eastern flank.

As your eyes follow these ancient migrants out over Daly City and San Bruno Mountain, how can you not take in this stunning expanse of inland water, however impacted, and marvel at its resilience and beauty?

By Allen Fish
Director, Golden Gate Raptor Observatory

Banner: Allen's Hummingbird and Twinberry, photo by Don Moseman


Return to Park E-ventures archive or read more articles about related:

Topics: Birds, History

 

 

Comments

* * *
Beachbody fitness options are revolutionizing the way we think about our health and fitness choices by offering a wide variety of home fitness options! top computer repair services singer island  
Submitted by top computer repair services singer island on January 24, 2015 
* * *
Cricket podcasts are classified as the audio-based broadcasts connected with cricket tournaments. They make it possible for the cricket aficionados to relive these golden moments of any tournament, that had been missed by means of them for virtually every reason. www.scorespro.com  
Submitted by www.scorespro.com on January 22, 2015 
* * *
Thanks so much for this information. I have to let you know I concur on several of the points you make here and others may require some further review, but I can see your viewpoint. Zynga poker Cheats  
Submitted by william on January 21, 2015 
* * *
I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. Brave frontier cheats  
Submitted by william on January 21, 2015 
* * *
New web site is looking good. Thanks for the great effort. 8 Ball pool cheats  
Submitted by william on January 20, 2015 
* * *
I’ve been searching for some decent stuff on the subject and haven't had any luck up until this point, You just got a new biggest fan!.. Covet Fashion Hack  
Submitted by william on January 20, 2015 
* * *
Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. Covet Fashion Hack  
Submitted by william on January 20, 2015 
* * *
Very nice article, I enjoyed reading your post, very nice share, I want to twit this to my followers. Thanks!. Covet Fashion Hack  
Submitted by william on January 20, 2015 
* * *
You have a very inspiring way of exploring and sharing your thoughts. It is very uncommon nowadays, lots of sites and blogs having copy pasted or rewritten info. But here, no doubt, info is original and very well structured. Keep it up. abc home warranty best home warranty companies home warranty texas first american home warranty reviews 
Submitted by first american home warranty reviews on January 20, 2015 
* * *
I have recently started a blog, the info you provide on this site has helped me greatly. Thanks for all of your time & work. Angry birds star wars 2 hack  
Submitted by william on January 19, 2015 
* * *
Should there be another persuasive post you can share next time, I’ll be surely waiting for it. girlsdoporn  
Submitted by calvinbrock735 on January 19, 2015 
* * *
A solar car or Solar Powered Car is a land transport solar vehicle. They combine, you’ll be fascinated to know, the kind of technology you’d expect to find in the aerospace with the sort of stuff you find on a bicycle. Up till 2011, solar cars were mostly for solar races and such like, but since then, they are slowly being adapted for everyday use on normal roads.Bike Storage Ideas  
Submitted by asadalikhatri on January 18, 2015 
* * *
Your blogs and accumulation attracts me to arrive rearward again n again. http://grand77.asia/sbobet-casino/  
Submitted by http://grand77.asia/sbobet-casino/ on January 18, 2015 
* * *
This is an awesome article. Believe it or not, I really was in need of this article. Cause, this information is really rare to find. Thank you man. auction results construction equipment  
Submitted by jack13 on January 18, 2015 
* * *
The post about your experience in Armenia is really interested. Thanks for providing us information about the friendliness and simplicity of people from Armenia. It is always good to know about the old traditions and the their culture.30daychange  
Submitted by asadalikhatri on January 17, 2015 
* * *
Thanks for writing such a good article, I stumbled onto your blog and read a few post. I like your style of writing... buy 100 real instagram followers  
Submitted by jannat1 on January 17, 2015 
* * *
This is a good post. This post gives truly quality information. I’m definitely going to look into it. Really very useful tips are provided here. Thank you so much. Keep up the good works. Arcane legends cheat  
Submitted by william on January 17, 2015 
* * *
I'll say a seat belt cutter used by EMT's, Paramedics, Fire Dept. Personnel. payday loans no credit check  
Submitted by davidjohn on January 17, 2015 
* * *
I am really like it very much for the interesting info in this blog that to this website is providing the wonderful info in this blog that to utilize the great technology in this blog. naturewise garcinia cambogia  
Submitted by naturewise garcinia cambogia on January 16, 2015 
* * *
Forex managed funds Blessed I am that I am reading this blessed document these days. I really assumed that the very best of the articles stopped arriving. However immediately after looking over this, my belief rises again!  
Submitted by ali on January 15, 2015 
* * *
This is so beautiful and creative. I just love the colors and whoever gets it in the mail will be smiling. rebelmouse 
Submitted by jannat1 on January 14, 2015 
* * *
cheap eliquids This new article of yours is a mind-blowing one. There are not many articles which impress me. But, this one has by quite a lot of impressing. I really liked all of the elements in this article and I hope I will see the quality of this article continued in the other articles that you will publish in the future as well. 
Submitted by ali on January 14, 2015 
* * *
Great post! I am getting ready to whos across esta información, is very helpful my friend. Also great blog here With All of the valuable information you have. Keep up the good work you are doing here. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by bubblegum casting on January 14, 2015 
* * *
Very interesting blog. A lot of blogs I see these days don't really provide anything that I'm interested in, but I'm most definitely interested in this one. Just thought that I would post and let you know. Kenmore range repair 
Submitted by ErinaJones on January 14, 2015 
* * *
Many thanks for this brilliant post! Many points have extremely useful. Hopefully you'll continue sharing your knowledge around. girlsdoporn  
Submitted by calvinbrock735 on January 14, 2015 
* * *
I simply wanted to write down a quick word in order to say thanks to you for those wonderful tips and hints you are showing on this site. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by bubblegum casting on January 13, 2015 
* * *
You made some incredible concentrates there. I looked on the web for the point and found the vast majority will help with this page. HomeCentric.org  
Submitted by HomeCentric.org on January 13, 2015 
* * *
I thought it was going to be some boring old post, but it really compensated for my time. I will post a link to this page on my blog. I am sure my visitors will find that very useful. Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates. girlsdoporn  
Submitted by stuart on January 13, 2015 
* * *
This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog.. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by bubblegum casting on January 13, 2015 
* * *
It's already like a competition to have a promising job. Everyone must work hard and do the best with their skills...secure document destruction  
Submitted by jack13 on January 13, 2015 
* * *
This is an awesome article. Believe it or not, I really was in need of this article. Cause, this information is really rare to find. Thank you man. travertine sealing  
Submitted by Davidjohn on January 12, 2015 
* * *
While investigating real estate resources, I discovered this housing web page, OC Housing News. I discovered this news post, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mae being called upon to absorb more private bank losses. This web post is better than most. The housing news and real estate analysis on the site is super, the cartoons are hilarious, and the real estate educational materials are fantastic. I advise discovering this Internet site to experience it.  
Submitted by stuart on January 12, 2015 
* * *
Gate National Parks, is on the east side of Sweeney Ridge, starting at the Sneath Lane trailhead.bubblegum casting  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 11, 2015 
* * *
I read your post and I believed that it was staggering .Your perspective is extraordinary. T2COnline  
Submitted by T2COnline on January 11, 2015 
* * *
Many thanks for this brilliant post! Many points have extremely useful. Hopefully you'll continue sharing your knowledge around. bubblegum casting 
Submitted by Anonymous on January 11, 2015 
* * *
You have raised a paramount issue..thanks for sharing..i might want to peruse more present issues from this blog..keep posting.. voyance telephone  
Submitted by jannat1 on January 10, 2015 
* * *
It's gracefull to see what i was searching for. That's the material which I was searching about. best workouts  
Submitted by davidjohn on January 10, 2015 
* * *
They are not final truths, but just methods for achieving other goals that do change with time.bubblegum casting  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 7, 2015 
* * *
Usually it’s a result of the sincerness displayed in the article I looked at.http://freehacksandcodes.com/clash-of-clans-hack  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 7, 2015 
* * *
I know that it is only people with a particular talent that can make a movie. All the people will not be able to do this at random as the results are bad. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by bubblegum casting on January 6, 2015 
* * *
from taking in the appraisals, however discover that alot of individuals should Community Business  
Submitted by davidjohn on January 5, 2015 
* * *
Great blog article about this topic,I have been lately in your blog once or twice now. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 5, 2015 
* * *
Now it is clear to me that it is easy to get clash of clans hack free clash of clans gems and hack tool. 
Submitted by clash of clans hacks on January 4, 2015 
* * *
I squirmed my way under some Sweeney Ridge coyote brushes just to see if I could, and to see what was there in the mysterious coastal scrub understory.bosphorus cruise  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 4, 2015 
* * *
This is an absolutely gorgeous article.. The amount of fun I had while reading this was just too damn much. I am in love with this article and I hope that I will like more of your articles that you will submit in the future. cheers. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by bubblegum casting on January 2, 2015 
* * *
Through this post, I know that your good knowledge in playing with all the pieces was very helpful. ira rollover rules 
Submitted by Anonymous on January 1, 2015 
* * *
If you are willing to know the biggest fat burning secret, then make an order on our site and start building the new step of your life with Fat Loss Factor - the step that will lead you to flat belly and slim thighs you were dreaming about. have a peek at these guys 
Submitted by Anonymous on January 1, 2015 
* * *
They were all articulate and keen to get involved. They discussed different ways about how the coalition could reach young people which was very insightful. v 
Submitted by Anonymous on January 1, 2015 
* * *
It's always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! biofuels 
Submitted by biofuels on January 1, 2015 
* * *
Such a very useful article. Very interesting to read this article.I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article. his explanation 
Submitted by Anonymous on January 1, 2015 
* * *
It's gracefull to see what i was searching for. That's the material which I was searching about. bubblegum casting  
Submitted by Anonymous on January 1, 2015 
* * *
There are some events exactly where there is a short space left over when a table is position in put that can be ideally turned into useful workplace with the inclusion of a little pc table. boxing supplies  
Submitted by davidjohn on January 1, 2015 
* * *
Great post i must say and thanks for the information. Education is definitely a sticky subject. However, is still among the leading topics of our time. I appreciate your post and look forward to more votacao 
Submitted by ali on January 1, 2015 
* * *
Such a excellent article! This information offers with wonderful as well as helpful tips for that all men and women. As well as me personally. catering for wedding  
Submitted by davidjohn on December 31, 2014 
* * *
hello friends you can get free minecraft codes generator through this site... minecraft free gift codes 
Submitted by free minecraft gift codes on December 29, 2014 
* * *
ton, now i'm a bit clear. I've bookmark your site furthermore include rss. keep us overhauled... hotel villa de pertis  
Submitted by BlackMen on December 28, 2014 
* * *
I agree with your blog and i will be back to check it more in the future so please keep up your work. michael kors outleti love your content & the way that you write. Knowledge graph 
Submitted by jannat1 on December 27, 2014 
* * *
stevia ist schon eine gute Sache for allem verursacht es keine Karies. Wenn ihr Lust auf Automatenspiele habt schaut doch mal auf meiner Seite vorbei. home copier  
Submitted by davidjohn on December 25, 2014 
* * *
Also, the right timing for updates of the buildings in Boom Beach wants to be well thought out! The guard time offers you an advantage here. Are you sure an update of a building, so you considered really good, how likely an opponent's attack during the time of the upgrade. You can lose all the islands and the associated resources boom Beach by temporally misplaced updates. boom beach hack  
Submitted by fsjhsghsr on December 23, 2014 
* * *
I found so many entertaining stuff in your blog, especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the leisure here! Keep up the excellent work. Recycled Teak Furniture 
Submitted by ali on December 23, 2014 
* * *
Certainly, a The Last of Us Remasterd tied again in front of the TV. As for the racing game genre, it was at the end Forza Horizon 2, above all, with the fresh Storm Iceland DLC. In my defense I must say that so far I had no time to start with Far Cry 4. What will probably catch me like its predecessor again. And watchdogs I hope to get on after a short initial session. eternity warriors 3 cheat  
Submitted by hdghsdgs on December 23, 2014 
* * *
thomas colemans Tinnitus Miracle Tinnitus Miracle Review - How to Cure Tinnitus Holistically from this source https://www.rebelmouse.com/tinnitusmiraclecurenow 
Submitted by Louanne on December 23, 2014 
* * *
I thought it was going to be any blah outdated advise, however it truly compensated for my tempo. I devise announce a hook to this usher on my blog. I am indisputable my tourists testament discover that very beneficial. Cheap Canada Goose Online  
Submitted by jackson on December 22, 2014 
* * *
Extremely useful and dependable online journal does precisely what it embarks to do. see  
Submitted by see on December 22, 2014 
* * *
Only yesterday: In these games, the team spirit counts. COMPUTER GAMES PICTURE shows you the best new co-op games - across all genres. fifa 15 ultimate team coins generator  
Submitted by dhshjsrf on December 19, 2014 
* * *
This is my initial tempo i stopover here. I discovered so numerous entertaining substance in your blog, essentially its disputation. From the tons of words on your papers, I conjecture I am hardly the entirely digit holding many the relaxation here! Withhold up the fantastic process. Funeral at Sea Newport Beach  
Submitted by Cadman on December 18, 2014 
* * *
I simply want to tell you that I am new to weblog and definitely liked this blog site. Very likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You absolutely have wonderful stories. Cheers for sharing with us your blog. Brochures  
Submitted by jannat1 on December 15, 2014 
* * *
This can be simply just the knowledge My business is discovering everywhere. pediatric chiropractic encinitas ca  
Submitted by pediatric chiropractic encinitas ca on December 15, 2014 
* * *
I am planning to give one thing again and help other people, for example, you helped me. asiapoker77  
Submitted by asiapoker77 on December 14, 2014 
* * *
Visit our site and generate the free robux at free of any type of payment. 
Submitted by roblox how to get free robux on December 14, 2014 
* * *
Wow! What an eye opener this post has been for me. Very much appreciated, bookmarked, I can’t wait for more! Fifa 15 Hack  
Submitted by jannat1 on December 14, 2014 
* * *
Wonderful stuff,you have done the best ever job by creating such a wonderful blog but there is another great site where you can get roblox robux generator at free of penny. 
Submitted by roblox how to get free robux on December 13, 2014 
* * *
Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates. freedebtconsolidationquotes.com  
Submitted by jackson on December 13, 2014 
* * *
I've gained some of utilization data from this site. A debt of gratitude is in order regarding offering these subtle elements. where to find a sugar daddy  
Submitted by where to find a sugar daddy on December 13, 2014 
* * *
Great post full of useful tips! My site is fairly new and I am also having a hard time getting my readers to leave comments. Analytics shows they are coming to the site but I have a feeling “nobody wants to be first”. buy facebook likes cheap  
Submitted by stuart on December 12, 2014 

 

Leave a comment

Name
Comment
Enter this word:


Browse Park E-ventures by Topic

Topic
Program 
 

Browse Park E-ventures by Date