April 25, 2008

Nature Revisited

I'm taking a break from all the Cancun blogging since I think some of you are feeling sick, jealous, or naughty because of it all. I had to insert one of the most beautiful, relaxing, and peaceful days I've had in a long time. It was shortly after our Cancun trip, when I still had another week of Spring Break to bask in. I was getting upset that it was too cool to go to the beach since that's my go-to happy place, and that's when Ted suggested Eaton Canyon. Mind you, in the six years he's lived here, he's never been, so at least I have THAT leg up.

I'm a huge people person. By that I mean I'm huge and I love people, being a person myself. I've lately begun to appreciate the alone time as an under-appreciated second, however. So, at Ted's suggestion, I took a bit of a walk through some trails and trees and I'm here to show off some of Spring.

This was one of the first sights upon driving in. This orange thready stuff was lying on top of plants everywhere. Mixed with the lavendar and the yellow, I thought it made for a mighty fine intro.

The great wall-o-cacti. Loved it.

There's a river that runs through Eaton Canyon - in fact, that's why it's now a canyon. Over millenia, that little desert trickle has carved its way down, just like the Colorado over the Arizona strata did, forming the famous Grand Canyon (boy, was THAT incredible). Of course Eaton Canyon is much smaller, but parts of it look pretty vast and boring (I'll admit). I loved this view of all the vastness and just this little blooming plant with gorgeous bright orange flowers right in the middle.

If I had Dana's or Christy's DNA, I would have turned those little flowers into some sort of head wreath or stationery set in about 4 minutes flat, but I had to settle for a picture and just the gratification I felt for even noticing it.

And here's a fun one. Who thought of making the trail this way? Um, I hope you're really good on that bike!

This was nearby. Thought it was picture-worthy.

Everything was so lush and green. The trees and bushes haven't had a chance to bake yet in the hot, dry fire season months. It's probably boring for you, but I just loved it.

I found a little fungus growing on a soft mound. And no, Dallin, I didn't "taste-test" them.

If you're wondering, I don't know either. A certain "free range" SNL skit is coming to mind...

I thought this was a cool picture with the reflection and all. It's also any kid's dream if they have a microscope at home. That pond was a festerpot of critters.

I loved this shot of the swath of pink bougainvillea in someone's backyard amongst all the palm trees. Southern California at its best!

And what's an Eaton Canyon trip without a lizard sunning on a rock? They do this, see, because they're endothermic animals. The common man calls them "cold-blooded", but this is a misnomer. Their blood isn't actually cold. They are just unable to produce their own heat from within, like mammals, so they depend on their environment to stay at an ideal temperature. Yup, just covered that topic this week.

I'll be back soon, EC, but buh-bye for now!


dana said...

Great pictures. My favs are: the orange flowers and the huge people person shadow. I would say it's all pretty bitchin, but that doesn't seem appropriate here.
whoops, I already said it.
Glad you enjoyed some nature!

The Hyer Family said...

I can't believe Dana just said bitchin...didn't know she had it in her...one less person I have to watch my mouth around...we love Eaton Canyon and have rediscovered it with our girls...we never get very far...just to the river...everyone gets wet...we go home...

Jennette said...

Beautiful. You're making me really miss CA! And I just looove those California poppies too. I was thrilled when we lived in Berkeley to find out that they were the state flower.

Dallin said...

Thanks for remembering me, Allison, and more importantly knowing what I was thinking. Do I see a new psychedelic 'shroom dessert on the horizon? Yummy, er, groovy, I mean...man I'm so wasted!

Eaton Canyon has always hit close to home. Used to volunteer at the nature center, ride my mtn. bike and run cross-country races up in there. My Eagle Project still stands (21 years now!)-A large sign in the EC parking lot that was about the only thing left standing after the raging forest fires of a few years ago. Thanks for the exposé on a great area.

Dallin said...

By the way, that orange stringy stuff is called Witches Hair. I don't recommend taste-testing it...unless you can turn it into some killer dessert.

Kizzycakes said...

i'm glad i'm not the only one who lived there for a few years w/o an eaton canyon visit. can you believe it?! so i whole-heartedly thank you for the tour. maybe we'll come back some day...oh glorious pasadena. how we love & miss...

charrette said...

Oh my gosh i totally miss Eaton Canyon -- and all of Pasadena! But thanks for taking me on your little hike via the blog world.

Oh, and FYI- that Witches Hair ("orange stringy stuff") kills about everything it touches. You just documented a murder in progress! :)

Renee said...

I never made it out to Eaton Canyon either. Boo...I don't think I ever even heard of it! So, thanks for bringing it into my life. I did, however, take my first trip to the Grand Canyon this weekend...AMAZING! And, now I don't feel so bad about posting lots of scenery pictures :)

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