Tag Archives: Strawberry Canyon

シロクマのセレブな週末レポート

ひっさびさのシロクマ通信です。セレブな週末レポートをお届けします。

土曜日。朝ご飯を済ませたら屋根のない車に乗って近所の山まで。カリフォルニアですもん、スポーツカー、当然でしょ。
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いつものコースを軽くハイキング。ストロベリー・キャニオンという、UCバークレー裏にある場所です。このトコトコと嬉しそうな歩調をご覧下さい。

足をどろどろにするのがシロクマ的山道の楽しみ。この足で家に戻って庭でおやつ食べて、キタナイ足のまま家に入ってきて家中泥だらけに。これはハイキングの終わりの写真。泥のソックス。

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日曜日。海際の公園でバークレー・カイト・フェスティバル。他に用事がない限り、毎年行きます。普段の遊び場の公園がすっかり変貌しているのをシロクマ的にはなんと思っているのかわかりませんが…。青空に浮かぶ様々な凧。タコ型がけっこうあるのは日本語では凧と蛸が同じ音だって誰かが触れ回ったからでしょうか。それとも青い空と青い海に共通のものを感じる人が多いからでしょうか。

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凧フェスですが阿波踊り。踊ってるみなさんは「アメリカへ来てからはじめて阿波踊りに挑戦しました」なんておっしゃいますが、とっても上手です。日本人の血なのか重心低くて安定感あって、その形を見ただけで「あっニッポン!」と感じます。阿波踊りのほかに舞踏も恒例で登場します。ちょっとしたミニ日本祭。和食バーベキューも。シロクマは何人もの友人知人に頭なでられていました。

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人間のおやつ。この種のお祭りの食べ物は最近ほんとにインターナショナルになりました。それにけっこうおいしい。ちょっと前まで一番フツーだったはずのホットドッグはひょっとして絶滅の危機にあるかもという気がするくらい。

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駐車場と公園の往復はシャトルバスに乗ります。

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バスなんて毎日乗っててフツーだぜ、というこの顔も恒例となりました。混雑した車内では通路だと邪魔なので今年は座席に座ってみました。前の席のお嬢ちゃんの表情がいいですねえ。お嬢ちゃん、大丈夫、犬は普段はバスには乗りません。今日だけ特別。

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そして炎天下(とはいっても北カリフォルニアは涼しいですけどね)で遊んだあとはビーチで足を濡らして涼みます。

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そんなわけです。

最近あんまり投稿してなくてすみません。シロクマも私たちも元気にしております。

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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EXCLUSIVE REPORT!!! Authentic Photos!!! Klondike Weekend Activities!!!

Mr. Klondike agreed to let a photographer from Klondikenews.com accompany him during some of his public outings this weekend.

Saturday he journeyed to Point Isabel for some quality time with his close friend Kizzie and for a brisk run followed by a martial arts workout and a swim

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Sunday was a trip to Strawberry Canyon for a mountain stroll and quick meet-and-greet with some younger members of his fan club

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Don’t forget to subscribe to Klondike News for exclusive reports, photos, and updates direct to your mailbox!

A Klondike Double Feature

As many of you are  aware, Mr. Klondike is the first Pyrenees/Anatolian Shepherd/Polar Bear Mix to have won an Emmy as their first major motion picture award and gone on the same year to win Academy Awards for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay. He’s taken those talents and used them to produce not one one, but two ninety second videos!

The first video is an exploration of his friendship with Kizzie, a Dutch Shepherd. Based on actual encounters, Klondike Kizzie Highly Video 2016 uses a montage of short interactions to tell the story. Mr. Klondike is expecting this video to win first place on at Sundance, Cannes and The Oscars. It has already been nominated for several Academy Awards including Best Use Of Snout, and Most Realistic Pausing Play To Get A Treat In A Documentary.

 

Today’s second feature is an expose on play between Mr. Klondike and a new friend, a Dane by the name of Bailey (no relationship to the WKRP character). Academy Awards expected include Best Play Growling and Most Realistic Collision of Two Hundred Plus Pounds of Dog.

 

Walk Report: Strawberry Canyon

 

Vista

Strawberry Canyon is a wonderful place. It doesn’t offer quite the wide variety of walks as Roberts Recreational Area but it’s beautiful, very convenient to Berkeley and features enough up hill climbing to be  a lot of walk in a little time.

Difficulty is moderately challenging – most people and their animals can do it fine, though The Connector (100+ yards, 13% grade) will be a bit of a slog for some.

Strawberry Canyon is a Great Place to Walk

  • Hilly enough to give you and your beast a really meaningful walk in 60-90 minutes, but easy enough to be accessible for most people and dogs.
  • Beautiful trail with Redwood, Eucalyptus, and (at least at the trail base) wild turkey (no, the birds, not the bottles) and stunning, panoramic bay and city views
  • One main trail with some side routes so you will not have to worry about getting lost.
  • It’s an out-and-back walk so make it as long or short as you want
  • No bicycles or other vehicles allowed (though I did see a mountain bike once)
  • Dogs allowed off leash
  • Tucked right behind the UC Berkeley stadium, it’s pretty much in the middle of Berkeley
  • There are enough other people and dogs around to feel safe and provide some four footed socializing, but never does it feel crowded
  • Surprisingly good cell phone reception in most places

Of Course, It’s Not Perfect

  • Beautiful though it is,  this walk doesn’t have the variety of some of the other Bay Area parks and some points on the trail feel just like a dirt road.
  • Parking lot (see below).

Important Notes

  • This is definitely a daylight only trail. There are steep, sheer drops off some trail edges. It would be a long way down
  • The parking lot is small, rough and often too crowded. Also, in some places the lot surface is tilted off camber, meaning a car door can shut itself so be very sure to hold your car door when loading and unloading. 
  • You might want to bring water on a hot summer day, especially if you plan on going all the way to the top
  • Update 3-23-16: The Strawberry Canyon Lower Parking Lot is temporally closed. The sign said due to seasonal flooding risk. However, I was able to park in the Strawberry Canyon Recreational Center lot with no problem. See Access below for details.

Score: 85% (Would love to give it more, but looses 5 points for parking and 10 points for relative lack of walk options)

Access

The Strawberry Canyon Lower Parking Lot (Google map and directions) on Centennial Drive, between the stadium and botanical gardens, is very convenient and free, though often crowded and a bit crude. It’s also possible to use paid parking in the Strawberry Canyon Recreational Center lot  (Google map and directions) and walk via a trail to the Strawberry Canyon trailhead, but I’ve never done it.

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The Strawberry Canyon parking lot. Confusing signs aside it is legal for the general public to park there except during game days. Just be careful.. it’s small, rough and tilted off camber in places.

 

Our Walk

Our basic walk is a 90 minute out-and-back, turning around at Marker 33, and this is what I recommend for most people. It’s plenty of walk and you’ll see  most of the best parts.

If you want something longer go all the way to the top at Grizzly Boulevard and back. This six point three miles took us close to three hours, but we explored some side trails before heading back to the main trail.

The first mile goes up a relaxed 300 feet. Then you hit The Connector, a thigh-burning   hundred plus yards that (if the numbers I pulled of some random running blogs are right) goes up about 80 feet for a very challenging 12-13% grade. After that it’s a slow and gradual climb up to the top, and then of course a nice decent back.

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In the parking lot. Mr. Klondike wishes to exit the motor vehicle and commence his constitutional.

Start of Strawberry Canyon Hike
Head up to the the trailhead, which is parallel to Centennial Drive
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Our walk starts here at the trail head
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Another shot of the trail head
In Strawberry Creek
The first part of the trail follows, but is above, Strawberry Creek, where Klondike loves to cool off on the way back
Woodridge groove crude shot
Sometime around the first half mile you’ll pass Woodbridge Metcalf Grove, a forest of giant Redwood trees planted by students in 1926. It’s a great picnic spot and an advance side trail. More later.
looking up the connector
Taking a break on The Connector
Sniffing along the trail
Important trail sniffing (is there any other kind?)

returnin from off trail exploration

Klondike returns from some off-trail exploration

Marker 33
Marker 33 – turn around here and you’ll have about a 90 minute round trip. You will also have seen not all but most of the best parts. We usually hit Marker 33 in about 50 minutes.

 

The Bench
This is called Then Bench and is somewhat beyond Marker 33. Trail runners often use it as a marker/turn-around point.

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Klondike just loves flying down The Connector on his way back. And by the way, there were no tricks used in making the image above – he really was running that fast, and enjoying every second of it.

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Tired, dirty, happy dog at the end of his walk

 

Advanced Option – Woodbridge Metcalf Grove  

This shortcut is for people who love giant Redwoods (and there’s a lot to love) and don’t mind a steeper and less clear ascent then The Connecter. You’ll come to the below marker about half a mile from the trail head. It will be on your left.

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Follow the trail behind the Woodbridge Metcalf Grove sign, ignoring the typo in Metcalf. Also probably ignore any picnicking couples looking for privacy. Which can be harder when Klondike goes over, introduces himself and asks what they might have in their baskets.
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Follow the trail to the right. You’ll need to sort of guess and pick through it, but so long as you are heading up hill and right-ish you are OK.
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The trail will connect to the Upper Jordan Fire Road (piece of Strawberry Canyon trail above The Connector). It does this in a bunch of places so if one feels too steep (like in the photo above), just find another.

 

Map

I’ve been saving this for last since it looks a little intimidating but doesn’t matter much – to do this walk all you need to do is stay on the main trail, avoiding small side trails, and you will be fine.

Map with directions

(Click for a larger/zoomable version)