Off we headed into the Southern Sierra. I choose the location as we could fill an ebird data gap and we did end up with 16 species of birds with our most interesting sighting being 16 sage thrashers. They are on the move north to their breeding grounds. I was not expecting flowers or anything much to look at. Fortunately, I was disappointed in my boring hike expectations.
We had a hillside of coreopsis to greet us when we got out of the car and my plan to walk up the dirt road was out the window. We were heading into the brush to bushwhack over to see the flowers.
|Coreopsis up close|
We continued up the wash and came upon an amazing sight, or perhaps I should say site. It was a historic Indian acorn grinding hole. As we were admiring it, we noticed the rock by it looked like a mortar. Wow! We hardly ever see the combination. A few steps away we were treated to an even bigger surprise -- more grinding holes, another mortar, and what I can only describe as sitting rocks for the grinding holes. We were quite tickled and awed.
|Mortar and grinding hole|
We stopped for lunch at a view spot of more coreopsis and then headed back to the car. We did about 7 miles and my leg didn't feel too bad. I was back in hiking mode. Yay for me!
|Fremont's Gold Syntrichopappus fremontii|
|Indian Paintbrush Castilleja applegatei ssp. martinii|
Martin's paintbrush or Wavyleaf indian paintbrush
|Broad-flowered Gila Gilia latiflora ssp. davyi|
Complete bird list:
Mountain Quail 1
Red-tailed Hawk 1
Say's Phoebe 2
Loggerhead Shrike 1
Common Raven 6
Horned Lark 12
Rock Wren 4
Cactus Wren 2
Sage Thrasher 16
Black-throated Sparrow 1
Dark-eyed Junco (Oregon) 10
White-crowned Sparrow (Gambel's) 60
Bell's Sparrow 10
California Towhee 2House Finch 10