Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ridge runners

With a week of rain forecast forecast on the horizon Alice and I decided on a hike to the sunny slopes of Pleasanton Ridge. Our hike was extra fun as we welcomed Cheri O"Neil Matthews along for a our Sunday trip.

Tracy's blue skies were replaced with a veil of fog arriving at the Pleasanton Ridge Park but an hour or so into the hike the fog lifted and we hiked under the blue skies along the lush green hills. Olive groves lined a section of the rolling hills as we journeyed along the ridge enjoying the scenery and mild temperatures.

It was a great hike with our special guest. We took in views varied from the morning mists to vultures stretching in the sunlight to mossy bridges hidden in the shadows. They were a welcome change from the gray rain filled skies of last week and those approaching. Great company, fantastic views and good exercise a great hike.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Desk clutter

This reminds me to clean out my desk drawer every now and then. You never know what you may find in there.

Weird sceince

I covered the South/West Park School science fair the other day and I was very impressed with variety of projects. But I was thinking what are the hidden meanings of their scientific experiments and hypothesis? Lets take a deeper look:

Building a better stink bomb

I see this kid has a future working for the Department of Defense or maybe Blackwater.

Toilet tissue

I have this science project every morning...

Clean renewable energy

This kid will never find employment with the city of Tracy.

Potato power

For their science fair project next year this student will try to reanimate their dead dog with car battery out of the family's Honda Civic.

Continental drift model

The only time anyone walks down the Styrofoam ball isle of the craft store is during science fair time.

Egg project

I can't remember what the science project was but the picture creeped me out. Maybe they have a future making films with Wes Craven or Roger Corman.

Lego magnetic levitating monorail

We have more luck getting this to go through Tracy than a high-speed rail line.


It wouldn't be a science fair without at least one baking soda-fueled volacano.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Foul weather fans

Misery loves company so I was glad to see someone lese hating life as I covered the first game ever in Kimabll High's new football stadium. The sophomore girls team hosted Lioberty Ranch for a soccer game under the lights in a steady rain.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Damp day

Alice and I had planned on a quick hike at the Morgan Territory Regional Preserve as we tried to get in some exercise before the rains fell. Slipping up the muddy slope on the way back to the staging area we had a damp day ahead.

We had been hoping for a torrent of water through the gully in the Coyote Trail but we found just a trickle. Maybe we came a week too late or even a week too early if more rains are on the way but we headed out on the narrow trail surrounded by moss-covered rocks in the shaded trail. The recent rains and left the trail damp and slick as we headed out on the first leg of the hike.

The rain had come a couple of times early but just a drop or two. By the time we reached the cattle gate to start the second half of the hike in the wide-open spaces the rain began to fall steadily. We decided to just retrace our route back to the parking. Our slick trail was quickly becoming a muddy slide as we trudged up. I felt like a car driving on black ice as I looked for some foot traction in the mud. We made it back just in time driving away form the preserve the rain fell harder.

Not the coldest hike we have been on but it was one but one of the wettest. With all the rains we are looking forward to a bevy of wild flowers to greet our spring hike in the next months.