(Northern) California Parkist

The dogs and I are avid park visitors. Join us as we document our wanderings, mostly in northern California. We visit all jurisdictions -- United States National Parks, State Parks, County, Regional and City Parks -- we love open spaces!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

California State Parks: Lachryma Montis (Sonoma)

While the Vallejo home itself is on a relatively small piece of land, the original property owned by General Vallejo was considerably larger.  A steady stream of walkers and bicyclers uses the city owned paved bike path built over the old railroad tracks that runs through the Vallejo land.  Fields of wildflowers, such as this chicory, extend in all directions creating lovely fields most of the year.

Monday, July 25, 2011

California State Parks: Petaluma Adobe (Petaluma)

Adjacent to the parking lot at Petaluma Adobe is a spacious picnic area almost hidden in the trees.  It is at the base of the hill before you actually wander up the pathway to see the Adobe itself.  This is one of the most underused areas of the site but it has everything a family could need - tables, nearby water and clean restrooms.  An evening breeze is almost guaranteed so a jacket may be necessary even if the afternoon was warm.  Dogs are allowed on leash.

City of Lakeport: Library Park (Lakeport)

Library Park runs along Clearlake in the City of Lakeport.  There are numerous picnic tables, a playground and a large grassy lawn on which to play.  Dogs are welcome, something Demi appreciated. What I most noticed here was the noise -- bird sounds!  While the park was visited by families and others, almost all of the sound was coming from innumerable birds chirping happily in the tall trees.  

Sunday, July 17, 2011

California State Parks: Petaluma Adobe (Petaluma)

The prickly pear cactus is blooming this week at the Petaluma Adobe.  I like to think of it as natural fencing or barbed wire that protects the adobe from both human and animal intruders.  It runs along the walkway from the creek to the building itself.  

The main function of the Petaluma Adobe was as a factory making goods and produce for the soldiers at the barracks in Sonoma back in the 1830s.  The hide and tallow trades were in full tilt and the rancheria was where 6,000 head of cattle were kept.  Grains were grown there too, necessary to feed the soldiers back at the barracks.

But for some reason it's always the cactus that really captures my attention.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Sonoma County Regional Parks: Maxwell Farms (Boyes Hot Springs)

When I took Brix walking through Maxwell Farms Regional Park yesterday morning it was obvious that his favorite part was along the creek.  We observed the leash law, but I still allowed him to jump in the water and swim a bit.  He dove in twice, smiled and shook himself dry.