May 11, 2013 - East Ridge - Creeping Forest - Middleridge

I was a bright and sunny morning with the Azaleas starting to bloom and the mosquitoes were out for a bite.
We started at the Gate House to take care of a report on East Ridge between Hway 236 and Blooms Creek.  It wasn't much and by the time I hiked the 100m to the bridge and returned it was cleared.
Next was a report of a 1 foot Tan Oak about 1/2 mile up Creeping Forest but first we ran into this across the trail.  We thought that whomever reported didn't know what a half mile was because this was less than 1/10 mile up Hollow Tree.

After clearing the first Tan Oak we came across this 21" oak.  We took turns on the whip saw which was surprisingly quick in cutting through the tree.
After 3 cuts we had the trail cleared of the 21" oak, not 1 foot.  We finished the loop coming down Gazos with lunch at the picnic area just past Gazos Creek Bridge.
After lunch we drove up to Ocean View in search of 2 reported Redwoods.  Nothing up to Ocean View but we stopped to take in the view.  I was very warm with the Yerba Santa in bloom and I was able to capture a Swallow Tailed Butterfly on one of them.
Right after Ocean View we did find the Redwoods.  I found out later that there was an emergency at the falls and this was cleared enough to get the vehicles through.  We used 2 saws and had much fun with the wonderful logs.

I would like to thank Dale S., Janie, Bill, Janette, Kathy, Peter, Michelle, Mike, and Norm for putting in 72 hours on the trails.  Another satisfying day in the park.

See you on the trails.


Very birdy day with the highlight being a Belted Kingfisher flying and calling up Opal Creek at Gazos Creek Bridge.

Birds of the Day
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)    3
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)    1
Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus)    4
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)    1
Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)    1
Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi)    1
Pacific-slope Flycatcher (Empidonax difficilis)    6
Warbling Vireo (Vireo gilvus)    3
Steller's Jay (Cyanocitta stelleri)    4
Common Raven (Corvus corax)    1
Chestnut-backed Chickadee (Poecile rufescens)    2
Pygmy Nuthatch (Sitta pygmaea)    2
Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)    3
Pacific Wren (Troglodytes pacificus)    2
Wrentit (Chamaea fasciata)    3
Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus)    3
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)    1
Orange-crowned Warbler (Oreothlypis celata)    1
Wilson's Warbler (Cardellina pusilla)    2
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)    5
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)    2
Black-headed Grosbeak (Pheucticus melanocephalus)    1
Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus)    1