Can’t Get to Swamp Rock, So Ray and I Walk Up the Poison Oak Alley Trail

Thursday April 2, 2015 Jenner CA.

Ray was at the boat ramp as I pulled into Jenner this morning. He said he’d been down at the river’s mouth overlook and the mouth was still open. We put our boats in the water and headed across to Penny Island and on up the river passing by these ducks.ducks

 

We took our time paddling up to muskrat nest beach, about a mile up the river. We were watching the hillside for wild pigs, but didn’t see any yet. We were also listening for the gobble of the wild turkeys, but they weren’t making any noise either, yet.

After a good rest at Muskrat, we started down the river’s edge as Ray wanted to go for a walk at swamp rock, which was back down the river about a quarter mile or so.

I was thinking we might make it to swamp rock, but with the recent high water from the mouth being closed, the swamp might be a swamp. Only way to tell was to go see, so off we went.river

 

Have the cormorants left?

Since the river’ s mouth was opened the other day, there haven’t been very many little fish jumping as before and  most of the cormorants seemed to have left to go someplace with easier food to get. It seems most of the small fish went out into the ocean as they should.

Here’s what I saw of what’s left of the cormorants today. A few days ago, there were at least several hundred of them.cormorants

 

We continued along down the river’s edge. The wind picked up some, but not too bad.paddle

 

Some sea lions are still here

Several times today, at least several sea lions swam by us hunting as they go. Most of the time, this is all we could see of them as they move fast and don’t stay on the surface for very long.sealions

 

Walking to swamp rock

One of the nice things about the swamp rock trailhead is the beach is nice for landing. It’s mostly gravel instead of mud and has a nice slope on it to make getting in and out easier.

We landed here to go for a little walk.kayaks

 

Can’t make it to swamp rock

We headed for swamp rock and ran into this water on the trail. The swamp had water in it, so we weren’t going to walk to swamp rock, so we went to plan B.swamp

 

Headed up the Poison Oak Alley Trail

We decided to walk up the river on the Poison Oak Alley Trail. Here’s Ray checking out these nice poison oak plants that are just getting their new spring leaves. Most of that green stuff in front of Ray is lush poison oak, the reason this trail is called poison oak alley.ray

 

We continued up the trail, but as it turned out, we’d be back to that poison oak patch a bit later.

Wild pigs show up

We walked up to a spot where we could sit and overlook the river, which was as far as we went. We scanned the hillside across the river from us for wild pigs and bingo. There they were alright. A couple mommas and their little ones.pigs2

 

And a turkey too

After we were well rested, we started back down the trail and heard a gobble across the river someplace so we watched for the wild turkeys as we walked and finally spotted one with some cows.wildturkey

 

Looking for an animal trail

As we were walking down the trail we were looking for a possible animal trail up the hill to go around the swamp. We walked down a couple trails that dead ended and weren’t having much luck when we returned to the place of all the poison oak and it looked like a fairly good trail led off from that poison oak area that we hadn’t seen before, because of all the poison oak.

That animal trail was like a freeway. Well used by the deer in the area, so we set off up it a ways.

Here’s Ray looking out from the animal trail we were checking out.trail

 

We went up the hill a ways and were pretty impressed with how good this trail was and will come back and check it out some more.

While going down the trail we went past this plant blooming which I think is called an Old Man of the Woods, if I remember correctly from years ago?vine

 

The plants has these fruit balls on it. Ray tasted one of these the other day, and said they are real bitter. :O)fruits

 

Back down the hill and in our boats we headed on in for the day, passing this pair of mergansers.merganserers

 

This was our view as we headed on in for the day, over to the boat ramp across the river at the town of Jenner.jenner

 

Mounting the new van speedometer

I went on home and intended to work on my new speedometer which I received in the mail the other day. It needs to be mounted. That had to wait a bit while I had a nap, but I finally felt like working on it.

The new speedometer isn’t really quite the right one for the van, but I can make it work. The new one has ears and is not round like the old face on the left, so I had to cut those off with my tin snips. I was thinking of unscrewing the new face and putting the old one on, but the mounting screws were in a different place and the odometer window was a different size. The new face doesn’t have any numbers to tell how fast either. There is also a hole for the high/low headlight indicator that was on the top of the new one, but on the bottom of the old one, so I had to drill a new hole for that.speedo

Of course, the new one seemed to have threaded mounting holes that were different than the old ones, so I had to find screws that would fit that and that took a lot of time, but I finally found what I needed and got most of it back together. I should be able to get it installed back in the van this weekend. I’m pretty sure it will work. The mechanical part looks the same as the old one, at least.

That was my day for another good one.

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