Well I'm down to the last few days before I leave Monday for Catalina. I went on my last hike yesterday with the Irvine Ranch Conservancy, in Baker Canyon. I didn't bring my camera because it's already packed away safely for the island. Of course, whenever you don't bring a camera, you see all the coolest things.
We started off the hike with beetles galore, trying not to step on them as we made our way up the hillside. Then, after pausing to enjoy the view of Red Rocks, we almost walked right past a tarantula on the trail. Everyone took out their cameras while I gazed sadly on. She was passive, but probably very freaked out about the giants crouching around her.
There was a surprising number of wildflowers still out, including a gorgeous little meadow of Plummer's Mariposa Lillies.
As we continued on, butterflies were swarming the trail, and they weren't a species I recognized. They were about the size of a buckeye, with eyespots on the wing, but they were a very dark, sooty gray color.
Lastly, as we neared the end of our hike, I stepped right over a gopher snake lying in the trail. After everyone got a look at it, we urged it back into the bushes off the trail. All excellent opportunities for photos I didn't get :/
I can't believe by Monday I'll be living on Catalina!