by Tim Palmer Island Press, 2002 468 pages, $28 So often in literature, mountains have served as backdrop—a sturdy, all-purpose scene-setter. But in Tim Palmer’s Pacific High, the mountains don’t just provide scenery. They’re the main characters. Chronicling his nine-month … Read more
To See the Stars Well do I know that I am mortal and a creature of one day;but when my mind follows the massed wheeling circles of the stars,my feet no longer touch the earth…—Ptolemy, epigram to the Almagest Observatories … Read more
San Francisco Bay is our largest open space, yet much of its shoreline has long been off-limits. Twelve years ago, the Bay Trail Project set out to change all that by creating a 400-mile ring of multiuse paths around the Bay. Now half complete, the Bay Trail is fulfilling its promise of increased access to the expansive vistas, rich wildlife habitats, and recreational opportunities of this incomparable estuary.
The Bay Trail through the Palo Alto Baylands is among the best places to see the endangered California clapper rail and multitudes of other shorebirds.
Mount Tam’s Steep Ravine and Dipsea trails take you from conifer forest to open slopes to sandy beach. And, best of all, when you take the bus and not your car, you don’t have to walk back uphill afterwards.
On the edge of the tidal marsh fringing Suisun Slough, a streaky dark-brown sparrow gleans seeds of tules and other rushes from the exposed mud. A shadow passes: a northern harrier, cruising for mice. The sparrow vanishes into a tangle … Read more