February 27, 2023
Friday morning was snow time at Skyline. Over the night, we got between 1 and 3 inches of snow up at the ridge. The last time I remember this kind of snow up there was in the early 2000's. It was quite a scene, traffic jam at Siesta Gate; snowballs, snowmen, and people everywhere!
Several of us Skyliners converged up there around 11 am, and what a scene!!
Here's the overview of Siesta Gate area, taken looking down from Water Tank Road:
Here's Jim and Francesca right at the gate:
The little snowman was waiting to greet us.
Here's our rain gauge; when it snows, snow just collects in the top and doesn't melt:
Here's the trail heading south, at the Slide:
It was pretty wet and slippery!
We hiked all the way out to the Swale. Here's that, looking up towards Barberry:
Notice how most of the snow on the south and west side has already melted. We think that's because, first, heat from the sun; and second, from the warmer wind coming off the Bay. It was striking how much snow was on the north side of the ridge and how little there was left on the south and west side.
As to the plants, how did they handle the snow?
First, here's a Bay branch, loaded down:
(thanks to Laurie for this photo)
Then, here's our California Poppies:
Here's Bisquit Root (Lomatium):
And here's our Cobweb Thistle:
And, last of the plants, here's Trillium, buds about to open:
The takeaway from seeing all these plants in the snow - they handle it just fine. California natives have evolved over millions of years, and they have a lot wider climate bandwidth than we would think, from just knowing them under "normal" conditions. They can take a lot more cold, a lot more heat, and suffer a lot more drought, and still do really well.
Lastly, here's the grand Mount D, lording over it all:
(thanks to Jim for this photo)
Quite a world we live in, eh?