Hike: Santa Teresa County Park

Bernal-Gulnac-Joice Ranch
San Jose, April 8, 2012
Easter Sunday Hike

By Peter Y. Chou

Preface: On Easter Sunday, April 8, 2012, a friend took me to Santa Teresa County Park in South San Jose for my first hike this year.
We had come here on June 12, 2011, when most of the spring flowers were gone. Today's hike began with a steep uphill climb on the Joice Trail. Unfortunately I forgot to bring my walking stick, and found a long thin twig as substitute "placebo". There was a gigantic poppy, the largest I've seen (palm width) on the trip uphill. I brushed aside some tall grass to photograph this "King Poppy". Another highlight was a Bay Checkerspot Butterfly landing near my feet. San Jose Mercury News (4-9-2012) had an article on these beautiful orange & black butterflies being re-populated in the Bay Area. On the way downhill, nine hawks flew across the sky, hovering over the power lines on the trail. Soon "Bird clouds" appeared in the sky to dance with these soaring hawks. My friend referred me to Common Wildflowers board and Local Wildflowers Index to identify the flowers encountered on this Easter Sunday hike.

Bernal-Gulnac-Joice Ranch Sign

Oak Tree on Hillside

View from Joice Trail

Three Power Lines on Trail

View from Joice Trail

Serpentine Rocks on Hill

Antler Branches by Joice Trail

Tree and Rocks on Hilltop

Flowers & Rocks on the Hill

King Poppy (Close-up)

Serpentine Rocks on Hill

Broadleaf Filaree (Erodium botrys)

Tidy Tips (Layia platyglossa)

Serpentine Rocks on Hillside

Cream Cups, Poppies, Tidy Tips on Hillside

Flowers & Serpentine Rocks on Hillside

Field of Poppies (Eschscholzia californica)

Serpentine Rocks on Hillside

Flaming Clouds in Sky

Bernal Hill Trail Sign

Jumbo Power Lines

Towering Power Lines

Poppy Growing in Rock Crevice

Beyond the Power Lines— Serenity

Bay Checkerspot Butterfly (Close-up)

Serpentine Rocks & Hills View

Power Lines on Bernal Hill Trail

Fiddlenecks (Amsinckia eastwoodiae)

Gnarly White Oak (Quercus alba)

Joice & Bernal Hill Trail Sign

Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium)

Trees and Serpentine Rocks

Joice & Vista Loop Trail Sign

Vista Loop Trail View

Vista Loop Trail Sign

Johnny Jump Ups (Viola pedunculata)

California Live Oak (Quercus agrifolia)

Oak by Joice Trail (Distant view)

Oak by Joice Trail

Oak by Joice Trail (Close-up)

Three Hawks in Sky

Three Hawks in Sky

"Bird Cloud" in Sky

Poppies on the Rocks

Face in Serpentine Rock

Tree as Halo on "Face Rock"

"Face Rock" and Tree

Elegant Brodiaea (Brodiaea californica)

Hawk and "Bird Cloud"

Tree & "Face Rock"

Two Hawks in Sky

Three Hawks in Sky

Nine Hawks over Power Lines

Hawk in the Sky

Four Hawks and Bird Cloud

Four Hawks and Bird Cloud

Five Hawks and Clouds

Clouds and Power Lines

Four "Spear Clouds"

Hawks, Clouds, Power Lines

Seven Hawks, Trees, Hill (1, 2)

Eight Hawks over Power Lines

Clouds & Trees on Hillside

"Crocodile Cloud" over Valley

Two "Bird Clouds"

"Chinese One" Cloud

Two "Bird Clouds" (Close-up)

"Bird Cloud"

Nine Hawks & Power Lines (1)

Hemlock Walking Stick

Chicken Coop (Park Entrance)

Chicken Facts (White Chicken)

Clouds Soaring Upward in Sky

"Night of the Frogs" Board

"Common Wildflowers" Board

— Photographs by Peter Y. Chou, April 8, 2012

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