Sunday, June 26, 2016

Point Reyes

There are many places around California that I have visited more than once, Point Reyes National Seashore is one such place.  One of the interesting things about this particular area is it has a lot of visual evidence for the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.  If you look at a map you can see Tomales Bay separating the northern part of the seashore from the mainland of California.  Tamales Bay is the San Andreas Fault submerged under water.  Point Reyes is moving northward, relative to the rest of California to its east which is moving southward.  Needless to say, there is a lot of tectonic activity that is responsible for this entire area.

My son and I visited here about 10 days ago with the intention of visiting the lighthouse at the point.  There is a virtual geocache out there.  You can read about what virtual geocaches are here.  The first time we went out there, we were stopped by illness and the second time we were stopped by weather.  It can get rather cold, windy and foggy out there.  Many times, during bad weather, the point is closed for safety.  The day we were out there last week it was cold because it was mid-week.  Budget cuts only allow them to be open on the weekends when there are the most visitors.

We went out anyway, hiked out to the observation point and looked down the 308 steps to the lighthouse.  We were able to get the virtual cache, because we were able to find all of the answers either here, or elsewhere.  It would be very tough to do without getting help from someone else unless you actually visited the site, which is really the purpose.

It would have been nice to have walked all the way down to the lighthouse, but it would have been very cold too.  The wind was gusting to about 25 mph on that day.  It was very brisk.  The walk out with my son was enjoyable and we enjoyed ourselves even though we weren't able to get to everything, which we knew was going to happen anyway, because of our itinerary.  I'll talk about that in my next post.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Some perspective from the parental side

I read something on line recently regarding the death of Harambe the gorilla in Cincinnati this past weekend.  I've seen all sorts of outrage directed at the zoo, directed at the parents, but I really haven't seen much of this, so here goes.

This photo was taken in the summer of 2000 while we were on a camping trip to Yosemite National Park.  My children were 8, 4 and 11 respectively in the photo.  On this particular day, we had decided to hike the Mist Trail, a popular trail that takes you to the edge of Vernal Fall, which is what you see in the background.  It's over 300 feet straight down at this point.  If any of you have ever been on this trail, you know it's very strenuous, and not to be taken lightly.  The last part is pretty much stair steps going up the rock face with a handrail similar to what you see in the photo.

At the crest of the staircase, my youngest, who had been diligently holding my hand as we climbed up, broke free and made a mad dash to this spot, which I couldn't see at the time.  Needless to say, my life flashed before me several times in what was probably 2 seconds worth of time at the most.  There were other people there who stopped him immediately.  Did I mention it's a popular trail?

The fence/guardrail you see is all the way around like that.  It would have been difficult for him to have made the dash and gotten outside of the fence.  But please remember, he did break free and was headed that way.  AND I WASN'T DISTRACTED BY ANY OTHER CHILDREN AT THE MOMENT!

If you have more than two children, you're outnumbered and you no longer have enough hands to hold onto all of them at the same time.  Think about that next time you start berating the parent of the young boy who ended up in the moat with Harambe.  All it took was a second or two.