Today I felt out of sorts. Not sure why, but I felt like I needed to get out and experience nature. The question was, where to go?
I did a quick check of the East Bay Regional Parks, and chose the Huckleberry Botanical Regional Preserve. I could have chosen anywhere, but the little I read of the description was enough for me. Truthfully. I just wanted a nice hike, something to work the muscles and work up a sweat. Oh, and of course, a place I could take a bunch of pics 🙂
The park is off of Skyline Blvd in the Oakland hills. You can choose to get caught up in the pricey houses perched precariously on the hills, or look the other way to get a beautiful view of the entire Bay. The sky was a bit overcast, so the pictures were not what they could have been, but I imagine that on a clear day, the sights would be wonderful. However, those shots were not my goal. I wanted to hike.
After reading the standard warnings about mountain lions and such, I was off. There were two pathways that would wind around the reserve. I decided to start on the upper trail to see where it went. Yes, I probably should have picked up a map, but the path is clearly marked, not only with directions, but with numbers letting you know how far you have gone, and how far until you return to the start. The area is heavily wooded, with various kinds of trees and plants, and, of course, huckleberries. For those of you who are wondering, no, there were no killer rocks this time :-). I would suggest if you are going, to ensure that you plan for a lot of time, so you can take some of the other trails, but be careful, because there are no path markings on those trails (I learned the hard way, but it was a nice adventure 🙂 ).
There are other reserves nearby, so you can easily check out multiple places on the same day, and parking is free which is a plus. They say that no dogs are allowed, but people had them, so you can judge for yourself. Here are some more pictures of the reserve.
The rest of the pics from the hike: http://photobucket.com/Huckleberry_Botanical
Huckleberry Preserve: http://www.ebparks.org/parks/huckleberry