Went on a hike on Sunday up the Upper Table Rock trail
, with two friends of mine from work.
It was a lot of fun.
I'd forgotten my camera (dang it!) and we saw a lot of animals and plants and views that I wish I'd been able to take a picture of.
I'm a lot more aware of animal movement than other people are -- I see it out of the corner of my awareness, even while walking and talking. It was really interesting to see what each of us tended to see first -- Linda (with the purple butterfly t-shirt) sees colors; Teresa (the tall one) sees shape and form; I see movement.
None of us know a lot about the animal life in the area, so other than identifying the ravens, we did a lot of guessing *g*
There was some kind of yellow-bellied seed-eating bird (we think a finch), and what I thought might be a cliff swallow. They were riding the thermals all day -- it was glorious to see them floating in the air, moving their wing feathers like ballerina fingers. Most of the birds we saw were the ravens and I always think of the old Norse mythology with Odin's two ravens Thought and Memory when I see them.
We startled a number of lizards on the way up and on the top. I woke a snake up, as well -- thankfully not a rattler! (The tail was smooth on the end.) And a squirrel!
isn't he adorable?
And we saw lots of wild flowers: camas (like the town), lupins (including this dwarf lupin on the top -- am I just too much of a lit geek that I kept thinking of the big ones as Remus and the little ones as Teddy?), some called Elegant Grodiaea (all purple!), and the Indian Paintbrush was starting a month early! And I think we saw dwarf meadowfoam, which was one of those low scrubby groundcover flowers that you don't see the beauty of until you get down to them. And suddenly, they're exquisite.
So were the views!
That's Teresa and her daughter Em.
I used to love to climb the inside of the Old Barn (it was 40 feet tall, made of old-growth oak 12x12 king beams, pegged together with wooden pegs) and sit in the rafters, feeling miles above the ground, and getting that flutter in the belly looking down-down-down... I got the same thing laying on the edge of the escarpment, looking down into the trees and valleys below. That thrill of "just maybe" that I get from heights.
We wandered around on the top of the tablerock for a few hours, then Teresa and Em went home and Linda and I went out to lunch and chatted more. It was a great way to spend Sunday -- we're talking about doing it again, up some other trail.
I'm so excited!