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California Redwoods and Waterfalls:
Big Basin Berry Creek Falls
April

April on the Berry Creek Falls Loop (BCFL) Trail in the Forest of Big Basin State Park.
Route was clockwise except where stated otherwise. Report is by J. Zimmerman except where stated otherwise. April brings the Spring wildflowers OUT!

Flower are our stars 2008 (counter-clockwise).
Flower are our stars 2007 (counter-clockwise).
Flower are our stars 2006: No 2006 report.
Flower are our stars 2005.
Flower are our stars 2004.
Flower are our stars 2003: Awaiting 2003 report from Scott Peden.
Flower are our stars 2002 by Scott Peden.

Also:
Flower are our stars 7-year summary of flower-slug-newt data.
Flower are our stars Castle Rock State Park wildflowers.
Flower are our stars Flower-slug-newt count graph.
Flower are our stars Wildflower species calendar on BCFL Trail.
Flower are our stars Walk With Scott Peden in Big Basin State Park.
NEW AUGUST 2005 Paces calibration (Berry Creek Falls Loop Trail).

http://tattooedbanana.blogspot.com
April special: The tattooed banana (slug)

Designation of "unique": refers to any species that was seen in a single location on the reported day.

Designation of New flower added to our spotting: In these reports, New flower added to our spotting ("New") refers to a flower that was not spotted by us in previous years.

Designation of "early": refers to any species that we are seeing this month on this trail for the first time since we started this record. [These flowers have often been reported by others this early. They are, however, early for us.]


Wednesday, April 3, 2008 - counter-clockwise.

Report by J. Zimmerman.

Flowers (alphabetically):

  1. ["unique"; at HQ]. Bedstraw a.k.a. Cleavers (Galium aparine). Tiny white flowers.
  2. Bush Poppy. Yellow.
  3. California (or Pacific) blackberry (Rubus ursinus).
  4. California wild lilac (a.k.a. California Blue Brush) (Ceanothus thyrsiflorus).
  5. California strawberry (Fragaria californica).
  6. ["unique"]. Checker lily (a.k.a. mission bells; a.k.a. Chocolate lily). Previously designated Fritillaria lanceolata and now corrected to Fritillaria affins
  7. Coltsfoot (Petasites frigidus).
  8. ["unique"; at HQ]. Dandelion (ALIEN).
  9. Branched (or Fat) Solomon's seal (Smilacina racemosa).
  10. ["unique"]. Hooker's fairy bell (Disporum hookeri).
  11. Huckleberry.
  12. Iris: Fernald's Iris (Iris fernaldii). [Pale creamy yellow flowers. Low ovary. Narrow leaves; slightly dusty.]
  13. Manzanita: brittle-leaved manzanita; showy white clusters of flowers.
  14. Manzanita: small-leaved (sensitive) manzanita .
  15. Redwood sorrel (Oxalis oregana). Pink; sometimes white, mauve, or bluish.
  16. Redwood violet (Viola sempervirens).
  17. Toothwort (Dentaria californica).
  18. Two-eyed violet (Viola ocellata).
  19. ["unique"; at HQ]. Western bittercress, Cardamine oligosperma. A.k.a. Few-seeded bittercress [JH Thomas]. Tiny white flowers; tiny opposite leaves.
  20. Western wake robin (Trillium ovatum).
  21. Western wood anemone (a.k.a. Wind flower or Oregon anemone) (Anemone oregana). White. (Anemone oregana).
  22. Wood sweet cicely (a.k.a. Mount sweet cicely) (Osmorhiza chilensis).
  23. Yerba de selva (a.k.a. Weed of the Woods) (Whipplea modesta). Tiny white flower with soft opposite leaves.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007 - counter-clockwise.

Report by J. Zimmerman.


At the Ranger Station HQ saw the first banana slug:
  1. Bedstraw a.k.a. Cleavers (Galium aparine). Tiny white flowers.
  2. California strawberry (Fragaria californica).
  3. Cicely: Western sweet cicely (Osmorhiza occidentalis).
  4. ["unique"] Dandelion (ALIEN).
  5. New flower added to our spotting Few-seeded bittercress [JH Thomas], Cardamine oligosperma. A.k.a. Western bittercress [Niehaus and Ripper]. Tiny white flowers; tiny opposite leaves.
  6. Redwood sorrel (Oxalis oregana). Pink.
  7. Redwood violet (yellow).
  8. ["unique"] Sedge.
  9. Sow thistle (yellow composite) (ALIEN).
  10. ["unique"] Yellow sanicle (a.k.a. snakeroot) Sanicula arctopoides.
  11. Mystery flower; pinkish-white tiny flowers with stick-like leaves.

    Taking Dool Trail toward Sunset Trail - beginning our counter-clockwise exploration.

  12. Huckleberry (white).

    By Middle Ridge Fire Road (on Sunset Trail): 2 new slugs; 3 total.

  13. Western wake robin (Trillium Ovatum).
  14. Hooker's fairy bell (Disporum hookeri).
  15. Two-eyed violet (Viola ocellata).
  16. Iris: Douglas iris (Iris douglasiana).
  17. Toothwort. Pink.

    By Sky-Line-to-the-Sea Trail Connector (on Sunset Trail): 4 new slugs; 7 total.

  18. Madrone.
  19. California (or Pacific) blackberry (Rubus ursinus).
  20. Yerba de selva (a.k.a. Weed of the Woods) (Whipplea modesta).
  21. ["unique"] Vetch.
  22. Branched (or Fat) Solomon's seal (Smilacina racemosa).
  23. Western wood anemone (a.k.a. Wind flower or Oregon anemone) (Anemone oregana). White.
  24. Coltsfoot (Petasites frigidus).

    By West Waddell Creek Bridge (on Sunset Trail): 46 new slugs; 53 total. First newt (terrestrial).

    By Timms Creek Trail (on Sunset Trail): 6 new slugs; 59 total.

    By East Berry Creek Bridge (on Sunset Trail): 12 new slugs; 71 total. 4 aquatic newts in the creek: 5 total newts.

  25. New flower added to our spotting Golden Chinquapin. Both as we entered the Chaparral and at Sunset connector trail, had both male and female flowers
  26. Several small-leaved Manzanita (Sensitive Manzanita) in bloom (white).
  27. Several brittle-leaved Manzanita in bloom (white). Each leaf is on a petiole (leaf stem); and the leaves are very brittle and easily snapped.
  28. Woodland groundsel (yellow).
  29. Yellow bush poppy.
  30. California wild lilac (a.k.a. California Blue Brush) (Ceanothus thyrsiflorus).

    By Sunset Camp Connector Trail: 2 new slugs; 73 total.

  31. Checker lily (a.k.a. mission bells; a.k.a. Chocolate lily). Previously designated Fritillaria lanceolata and now corrected to Fritillaria affins.
  32. Wild ginger (Asarum caudatum). Maroon.

    By Silver Falls: 1 new slug; 74 total. 6 new newts; (in water at Silver Falls); 11 total.

  33. ["unique"] Alum root (a.k.a. crevice heuchera or small-flowered heuchera) (Heuchera micrantha). Petals curl back; leaves are five-lobed (leaves of the similar sugar scoop are three-lobed).

    By Berry Creek Falls Bench: 11 new slugs; 85 total.

    By Berry Creek Falls view from Seat: 3 new slugs; 88 total.

    By Waddell Creek Bridge: 0 new slugs; 88 total.

    By Timms Creek Trail: 21 new slugs; 109 total.

    By West (lower) End of the connector trail: 24 new slugs; 133 total.

    By East (upper) End of the connector trail: 11 new slugs; 144 total. 1 new newt; 12 total.

    By Kelly Creek Bridge: 6 new slugs; 150 total.

  34. ["unique"] Douglas' Nightshade (Solanum douglasii). White.

    By Sunset connector: 11 new slugs; 161 total.

  35. Hill star (Lithophragma heterophylla) [with a rounded flower base rather than the V-shaped base of the woodland star (Lithophragma affinis)].

    By Middle Ridge Fire Road: 17 new slugs; 178 total.

    Arriving back at HQ via Sky-Line-to-the-Sea Trail: 16 new slug; 194 total.

April 2006.

No hike due to bronchitis/pneumonia. Sorry.

Wednesday, April 6, 2005.

Report by J. Zimmerman.


Lots of wildflowers visible by the Ranger Station HQ:
  1. ["unique"] ["early"] Miner's Lettuce (Montia perfoliata).
  2. ["unique"] Bur chervil (ALIEN).
  3. ["unique"] ["early"] Forget-me-not (ALIEN).
  4. ["early"] Cicely: Western sweet cicely (Osmorhiza occidentalis). Greenish flowers; long, smooth, sharp-pointed seeds.
  5. ["unique"] Dandelion (ALIEN).
  6. ["unique"] ["early"] Yellow sanicle (a.k.a. snakeroot) Sanicula arctopoides.
  7. Redwood sorrel (Oxalis oregana). White; sometimes mauve, pinkish, or bluish.
  8. California strawberry (Fragaria californica).
  9. Huckleberry (white).
  10. ["unique"] Sedge.
  11. ["unique"] ["early"] Bedstraw a.k.a. Cleavers (Galium aparine). Tiny white flowers.
  12. ["unique"] Scarlet pimpernel (ALIEN).
  13. Iris: Fernald's Iris (Iris fernaldii). Creamy petals with purple veins.

    Take Sky-Line-to-the-Sea Trail toward Middle Ridge Fire Road.

  14. Redwood violet (a.k.a. Evergreen violet) (Viola sempervirens).
  15. Western wake robin (Trillium Ovatum).
  16. Branched (or Fat) Solomon's seal (Smilacina racemosa).
  17. Two-eyed violet (Viola ocellata).
  18. Toothwort. Pink, white, sometimes with lavender tinge. (Dentaria californica, var. integrifolia).
  19. Lily: Star lily or Fremont's star lily Zigadenus fremontii).

    By Middle Ridge Fire Road: slug count so far is 6.

  20. Woodland star (Lithophragma affinis).
  21. Hooker's fairy bell (Disporum hookeri). Flowers are hidden in pairs under the ends of the twin leaves at the end of the stalks.

    By Sunset Connector Trail junction: 5 new slugs, 30 total.

  22. California (or Pacific) blackberry (Rubus ursinus).
  23. Yerba de selva (a.k.a. Weed of the Woods) (Whipplea modesta).
  24. ["unique"] Douglas' Nightshade (Solanum douglasii). White.

    By Kelly Creek Bridge: 55 new slugs, 85 total. And 1 terrestrial newt, 1 total.

  25. California wild lilac (a.k.a. California Blue Brush) (Ceanothus thyrsiflorus).

    By East End (upper) of the side trail: 4 new slug, 89 total.

  26. Western wood anemone (a.k.a. Wind flower or Oregon anemone) (Anemone oregana). White.

    By West End (lower) of the side trail: 23 new slugs, 112 total.

    By Timms Creek Trail: 14 new slugs, 126 total.

    By West Waddell Creek Bridge: 21 new slugs, 147 total.

    By Berry Creek Falls first view (at Seat): 3 new slugs, 150 total.

  27. ["unique"] Coltsfoot (Petasites frigidus).

    By Berry Creek Falls viewing platform and bench: 7 new slugs, 157 total.

  28. Inside-out flower (Vancouveria planipetala).

    By Silver Falls. 24 new slugs, 181 total.

  29. ["unique"] ["early"] Thimbleberry

    By Sunset Camp Connector Trail junction with Sunset Trail: 1 new slug, 182 total.

    Aquatic garter snake (~2 feet long with yellow and red stripes the length of its body). Aquatic garter snake approx. 30&inch; long on a trail-side bank in the transitional zone of the chaparral; Scott guesses it is looking for juicy lizards to eat.

  30. ["unique"] Woodland madia (a.k.a. tarweed) (Madia madioides).
  31. Bush Poppy. Yellow.
  32. Brittle-leaved Manzanita.
  33. Tiny yellow flower (Scott to identify).
  34. Lupine: blue with red at front of banner petal.
  35. ["early"] Trefoil: Small-flowered Trefoil (Lotus Micranthus).
  36. Heart-leaved or Santa Cruz Mountains Manzanita.
  37. Small-leaved Manzanita (Sensitive Manzanita).
  38. ["early"] Salal (Gaultheria shallon).
  39. Pacific star flower (Trientalis latifolia).
  40. [SP's identification.] Fernald's iris (Iris fernaldii).

    By Timms Creek Trail junction with Sunset Trail: 19 new slugs, 201 total.

    By West Waddell Creek Bridge: 41 new slugs, 242 total.

  41. ["unique"] ["early"] Orange Sticky Monkey Flower (Diplacus aurantiacus).
  42. ["unique"] ["early"] Blue Dicks (Brodiaea pulchella).
  43. ["unique"] ["early"] Wood rose (Rosa gymnocarpa).

    By Sky-Line-to-the-Sea Trail Connector junction with Sunset Trail: 3 new slugs, 245 total.

    By Middle Ridge Fire Road: 0 new slugs, 245 total.

    By Dool Trail: No additions.

    By HQ: No additions.

Thursday, April 1, 2004

Report by J. Zimmerman.

 Blue Witch.                                              Blue/purple flowers with bright yellow center. 
 Bush Poppy.                                              Yellow.
 California blackberry.                                   White.
 California toothwort.                                    White or pink.
 California wild lilac (Ceanothus thyrsiflorus).          Blue.
 Checker lily (aka mission bells).                        Greenish-yellow with purple spots.
 Coltsfoot.                                               White.
 Branched (or Fat) Solomon's seal (Smilacina racemosa).   White.
 Hooker's fairy bell (Disporum hookeri).                  White.
 Huckleberry.                                             White.
 Inside-out flower.                                       White.
 Iris.                                                    Creamy petals with purple veins.
 Lupine.                                                  Purple.
 Madrone.                                                 White.
 Manzanita (3 in bloom).                                  White.
    (Sensitive Manzanita; Brittle Leaved Manzanita; and
     Heart Leaved or Santa Cruz Mountains Manzanita (pinkish cast on their white flowers.))
 Pacific Starflowers.                                     Pink.
 Redwood sorrel.                                          White or pink.
 Redwood violet.                                          Yellow.
 Two-eyed violet.                                         White with purple "eyes".
 Vetch.                                                   Purple.
 Western Wake Robin (Trillium Ovatum).                    White (mature pink).
 Wild ginger (Asarum caudatum).                           Maroon.
 Windflower.                                              White. 
 Wood strawberry.                                         White.
 Woodland groundsel.                                      Yellow.
 Woodland star.                                           White.
 Yerba De Selva.                                          White.

Thanks to the Big Basin Volunteer Trail Crews for clearing so much of trail blockages, 
including the spectacular 3-for-1 trail coverage near Golden Falls. 

Huge increase in wild pig activity, with overturned dirt beside much of the trail.

Docent Scott Peden notes that hornets are colonizing the first cut-through log
on your left, on the Sky-Line-to-the-Sea portion, as you pass by the upper connector 
of the alternate trail (about 2 miles from HQ). 

And at Berry Creek Falls, the sun is still low enough for us to see the Spray Bows. 
Best seen from 12:15 PM to 12:45 PM; during daylight savings, from 1:15 PM to 1:45 PM.

April 2003.

Hiked but report not done. S.P. working on it. Sorry.

April 2002

Report by Scott Peden.

Monday April 15th, 5+ weeks since I did this the last time. The weather was clear, and there hasn't been rain for weeks. All creeks and falls are still running quite well, with minimal loss of water from the last couple of months. Most of the muddy spots have completely dried up.

In summary and with thanks:

Highlights:

See also these pages