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Date Sent:      June 29, 2007
Subject:           Morgan Territory Hike
From:               John Bondon
Special thanks to Andrew, Howard, Diane, and Will, for leading hikes last weekend. Unfortunately I was out of town and didn't make a one. :(

Andrew reports of his Livorna hike, "Just another great hike on a glorious East Bay day. 13 hikers. Mostly regulars but a few new ones including Kevin who carpooled with us. Kevin and Judith joined us at the Yogurt Shack. I got two more people hooked on the place. I can't believe it is no fat, it tastes so good."

Andrew also attended Diane and Will's Saunday hike at Briones, and helped lead the "short" version of the hike. He files this report as well: "On another beautiful East Bay day, we had 13 hikers and plenty of permits. 4 of us did the 8 mile hike to/from Bear Creek Staging. Will and Diane led the remaining hikers 13 miles around the Reservoir. But we had an unforgetable experience on the way back. We met 2 wild turkeys on the single track trail. They wouldn't move, but then slowly edged past us. We could have petted them but didn't. Judith took pictures of them. Sally fed them cranberries. If she didn't stop, I think they might have followed us back to Overlook. Very impressive seeing these magnificent creatures close up. Let's see Diane top that!"

Judith captured the following picture of the turkeys on her cell phone. "It was an impressive sight to see, especially the turkeys gobbling up the cranberries." It was an impressive sight to see, especially the turkeys gobbling up the cranberries.

Diane filed this report of the Briones hike as well: "We had a total of 12 people for this hike. Andrew very kindly offered to lead a shorter hike for those who did not want to do the 13 miles. We all started out on the Bear Creek Trail and once we arrived at the next staging area, Andrew and 3 others decided to turn around and return for a total of about 6.5 miles.

The remaining 8 of us continued around the reservoir. The weather was warm, but not too hot and the feedback I received was that the hike was enjoyable. 5 of us finished in about 4 hours and the remaining 3 finished over the next 30-60 minutes.

This was a challenging hike in that the elevation changes about 400-500 feet several times over the course of the 13 miles. We start out at about 550 feet and peaked out several times at about 1050 feet. Many areas were beautifuly tree-lined and cool, while other areas were open, dry and sparse of vegetation. Mars ran across a huge rattlesnake on the trail, but fortunately Roger's dog, Buster, did not :-)

Between miles 8 and 10, it becomes a mental challenge with the vast openness and many elevation changes. The last 2 miles are relatively easy and flat.

Andrew leads this Sunday's 8-mile MORGAN TERRITORY HIKE (FINLEY RD. ENTRANCE) and says: "I can almost guarantee wild turkey sightings.".

You'll find more details about this and other upcoming hikes posted on the East Bay Casual Hiking website.

Happy Trails! :)

Happy Trails,


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