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Camping in Mendocino County during an El Nino Event!

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One day me and a friend had made a decision to go off-roading at the Lost Coast in California during a weekend when a major El Nino event was going to drench the state. We talked and then we prepared for it. My friend has a Toyota Land Cruiser 4×4, and he was very familiar with the Lost Coast.

We chatted back and forth on FB for a week. However the day before we were heading out Caltrans District 1 posted a photo online of a major landslide that occurred 5 miles North of WestPort, CA, on highway 1. That was the road we’re supposed to take to the Lost Coast, but the scene was so bad a truck driver had almost gotten pushed over the slide of a cliff from the unstable hillside, so they closed the road indefinitely. When we arrived in Fort Bragg we thought the road would be open by the time we got there, but a big road side sign said “Road Closed Ahead.” Our plans were thwarted, but we quickly came up with another plan. That plan was to try to camp at one of the area campgrounds, BUT turns out they were also closed. Online it indicated that Van Damme State Park was open, but it said nothing about no camping. So my friend happen to know people in that area, so we went to their ranch and camped in the rain.

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Trail blocked by downed trees.

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This is the set-up we used to stay dry.

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Cooking bacon on the BioLite stove.

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Mendocino County is God’s Country.

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Off-roading during an El Nino event.

 

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Beware of dangerous surf conditions in Pacifica, CA

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On February 9th 2016 two people were on the pier in Pacifica, and they both somehow tripped, then fell into the ocean. An article from local channel 2 KTVU. http://www.ktvu.com/news/88251129-story

It is now common knowledge the cliff’s in Pacifica are eroding. They are also creating a very dangerous situation for people venturing onto the beach.

 

YOU COMING? Another Precious Urban Coyote Encounter

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You Coming? An Urban Coyote Encounter

I think this is a female, who is pregnant, maybe why she has a pack of male Coyotes, who come running to protect her? I will find out.
Today I walked up on this Coyote while he/she(?) was laying down on the ground. There were duck feathers everywhere, then I noticed bone fragments, a partial head, and a foot from this Coyote’s last meal.
When a Coyote takes off running their initial stance is so confident and wrought with strength that you can feel and hear them. Today my heart skipped a beat when I walked up on this Coyote and it ran off. They always seem scared at first, but after while they seem to entice me or lead me on.
‪#‎beingmyself‬ ‪#‎urban‬ ‪#‎coyote‬

Burn Area Rocky Fire and Jerusalem Fire

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Rocky Fire and Jerusalem Fire burn area

The landscape in the photo is where the ‪#‎RockyFire‬ and the ‪#‎JerusalemFire‬ have burned. So far together the fires have burned over 80,000 acres, and that estimate is rounded down. This is what the land looks like afterwards. In the future if an El Niño hits, this landscape will be dealing with extreme mudslides, and rock falls. The vegetation that has burned sometimes holds the land together, but when its burned its integrity is compromised thus causing slides when the heavy El Niño rains occur.

Notes from the field: Great Horned Owls

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A Great Horned Owl from Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, CA.

A Great Horned Owl from Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, CA.

Female Great Horned Owl.
Every evening between 4:30pm and 5:30pm the male and female Great Horned Owls will rendezvous in a tree near the nest. Before they rendezvous they communicate. The male does not seem to be allowed near the nest when their are babies in it. And right now their are two baby Great Horned Owls in Golden Gate Park. The good news, is, that the Owl nest is not near an area that can be accessible to those who fear the trees and the forest. Or not accessible to tourists and looky-lou’s, so maybe they will get to be truly wild. Their nest is also in the top part of the tree canopy. Not in the lower part of the tree canopy. However they are fair game for the Ravens.

More aerial photos of Golden Gate Park

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Aerial shot North Lake Golden Gate Park

Aerial shot North Lake Golden Gate Park

Aerial shot North Lake Golden Gate Park

Golden Gate Park Golf Course

Beach Chalet Soccer field under construction

Went flying today. I had people watching me this time. And of course I had to educate them all. A bit of wind today. A lot of down drafts. I’d go higher and the wind would knock it down a few feet. One of the pics is an aerial shot of North Lake in Golden Gate Park. One pic is of a gold course. And the other pic is the shot of the Beach Chalet Soccer field.
Had a quandary today. I wanted to go up in other areas, but the birds get curious. So I decided to not fly around the Hummingbird’s and the Ravens.

“Project Coyote” speech and presentation at the Presidio Officers Club.

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Coyotes are in our midst, they are in urban parks, they are in our neighborhoods, and sightings and encounters are more prevalent as ever. Coyotes are often misunderstood, and they are often shot mercilessly in the name of protecting livestock and pets. Coyotes inhabit many areas in San Francisco including Bernal Heights, Twin Peaks, Golden Gate Park, the
Presidio, and the Lincoln Park area. When people spot them their are often two reactions,scared or interested.

The Presidio Officers club is hosting a weekly speaker series called the Presidio Dialogues, and a non profit called “Project Coyote” was invited to speak at that event on November 6th, 2014. Project Coyote is “based in Northern California, and they work to change negative attitudes toward coyotes, wolves and other native carnivores by replacing ignorance and fear with understanding, respect and appreciation.” The speaker Camilla H. Fox, MA has over 15 years experience in leadership positions at the “Animal Protection Institute, FurBearer Defenders, and Rainforest Action Network.” She has “spearheaded
campaigns aimed at protecting native carnivores and fostering humane and ecologically sound solutions to human-wildlife
conflicts.” Project Coyote in essence educates and promotes coexistence with Coyotes and other Canids instead of the alternate which is hunting and killing them. Coyotes are apex predators, which means their presence in our communities is important to the balance of nature.

At least 55 people attended the speech and presentation, and the audience in general are very accepting of Coyotes. The presentation included sights and sounds of Coyotes via a slide show, and when the Coyote sounds played the audience loved it. Other highlights included ways to scare off Coyotes and ways to defend yourself from a Coyote. Coexistence was the main theme of the speech, and livestock owners are the targets of that concept because it is alleged that Coyotes kill livestock, or at least taunt them until they are injured and then become more vulnerable to an attack. Livestock owners
sometimes support Coyote killing contests. Project Coyote gives livestock owners ideas on how to coexist with Coyotes, and some of those ideas include bringing on livestock guardian dogs, or even raising llamas alongside their stock. Llama’s do not like any kind of dog and will run off a Coyote. Fox says people can create shaker cans, or carry walking sticks, or even use water to scare off Coyotes.

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