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“Look, I caught an eel!”

Today we hiked from Vista Hill at Foothills Park down Chamise Trail to Boronda Lake.  This is a great hike on a sunny, cool day.  The .7 mile hike is downhill to the lake but then it is, obviously, uphill back to your vehicle.  The one thing to be aware of though  is that Foothills Park is open only to Palo Alto residents.  Sorry.

Along the way, be sure you watch for the poison oak off to the sides along the trail.  After  you make the turn to go toward the lake, you don’t have to worry much about it though.  Today we saw checkerspot butterfly caterpillars on the sticky monkey flower plants in the draw below the bridge along this trail.  The kids were thrilled to see the fuzzy little gray guys munching down the leaves.

Once we were at the lake we saw a handsome cormorant sunning itself on the boat dock.  A ruddy duck sat next to it, curiously.  Our noises scared them both away.  What a surprise!  Clearly hiking with 8 three and four year olds is not a quiet proposition.  I collected  sticks to be used as  “fishing poles” and immediately the kids wanted to begin to “fish.”  There is usually enough  floating plant material in the water next to the dock for the kids to scoop up.  One of my little guys called out ” Look, I caught an eel!”  after catching a long piece of tule leaf.  The kids decided that they were going to “bake” the fish.  I have the kids lie down on their bellies when fishing which makes it less likely for them to launch themselves or each other into the water!  It was a lovely day for us all.

Happy  hiking and leap on!

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