Monday June 8, 2015 Jenner CA.
Ray was at the boat ramp when I arrived at Jenner this morning so I put my boat in the water and joined him. We paddled across the river to the little channel on the upper end of Penny Island.
Let’s check the vulture nests
Ray said he wanted to go up river since the mouth of the river was closed. I said I’d like to check the places of the nesting turkey vultures to see what’s going on, so we headed up the river with Muskrat nest beach as our destination where we planned to get out of our boats and go for a little hike up the hill to check on the vulture nests.
We had to look around a bit at Muskrat to find a good place to go to shore as with the mouth closed and the water level high, there aren’t as many good spots to get in and out of boats along the shoreline.
Anyway, we found a spot that worked and tied our boats up and started up the trail towards Buzzard Rock, where I know there is an active turkey vulture nest, but I haven’t been able to get any pictures of the young yet.
We went up through the brush on old animal trails which are a bit on the overgrown side. Here’s Ray catching up to me, coming up the hill just below Buzzard Rock.
We’d made a lot of noise coming up the trail, but as we neared the top of the rock, I asked Ray to keep it quiet to see if we could catch the baby vultures out in front of their nest. We’d made a lot of noise shooting the bull on the way up, so I didn’t really expect the birds to be out in sight, but as I looked over the top of the rock, this is what I saw. Two baby vultures sitting in the sun just above their nest.
I motioned Ray who was coming up behind me on the rock to be quiet as there they were. We watched them for about five minutes before they retreated to their nest. These birds are older than the ones I discovered last year at another rock, just up the hill, where we were going next.
We headed up the hill through some nice areas. Here’s Ray, just below the ridge top.
We are headed to the Old Indian Ladies Face Rock. The one in this picture.
I marveled at this scenic sight, thinking it’s as good a view an anyone else has of anything in the world. And the best part is, it’s right here in front of me. :O)
We were walking across the field near the ridge top when there was a heck of a commotion about fifty feet from us in the brush and this deer jumped out and ran. It turned out to be a buck we had startled from it’s afternoon nap.
We are getting near the big rock walking through the wild flowers.
From the top of the rock I could see the flock of geese we saw earlier slowly paddling up the river, just like us. Ray says they appear to be doing what we do. Sure looked like it.
Last years nest area
We walked below that rock checking out last years turkey vulture nest area to see if it was active. We walked down into this crack in the rock with lots of ferns where some turkey vultures were nesting last year. We didn’t find anything active, but I’m sure they’ll be back eventually. It’s too good of a spot.
We decided to make a loop out of this walk, so we headed down towards the river under the Indian rock, which meant we’d have to walk along the Poison Oak alley trail to get back to our boats.
Here’s Ray coming down the trail, almost back to the river.
Trails are hard to follow
On the way back along the river, we got lost several times and had to hunt for the trail, which just means we got more exercise and more tired out.
As we approached the rock where the young vultures were, the trail forked. I told Ray I was going back to the top of the rock to check on the baby vultures, but he could take the low trail and I’d meet him back at the boats. He took the low trail that goes below the nests.
See Ray going down the trail in the brush?
When I got to the top of the rock, I looked down here and could see the baby vultures out in front of the nest, but they were under some brush resting out of the sun, so I wasn’t able to get any more pictures of them.
I took the high trail away from the rock. This is looking back at the rock as I was leaving on an upper trial headed back to the boats. This is Buzzard Rock.
I found Ray back at the boats. Here he is untying his boat where we had put ashore for our hike.
We got back in our boats and headed back down the river at a leisurely pace, just enjoying the nice day.
We went on home after dealing with a couple stupid guys at the boat ramp. I was surprised Ray keep his cool.
When I got home a nap was in order, then I went out in the yard and set some water flowing to some of my plants and just watched.