Bending in the wind - The Seven Year Itch - CycleBlaze

March 22, 2024

Bending in the wind

We both awoke this morning thinking about the weather.  Today’s forecast is roughly like yesterday’s, and tomorrow, and tomorrow - steady, strong, at times intense winds from the southeast.  Last night we drew up plans for ourselves - a walk for Rachael, a bike loop into the interior for myself - but it didn’t take long for me to decide a walk made more sense to me also.

We have plenty of time to talk about the weather this morning, because breakfast isn’t until 8:45.  Rachael fixes herself a coffee at the self serve machine down the hall, and then gives me the bad news that it seems to have quit working after she served herself.  So I have to wait a couple of hours for my fix.  And as it turns out, I have to wait longer than that the hotel suffers a power failure so the hosts can’t brew anything either.  I’m nearly done with breakfast when the lights come back on, there’s a cheer, and two coffees appear at our table a minute later.

We’ll start with pics from Rachael’s walk, which doesn’t go quite as planned.  It starts with a walk down to the beach, with the plan to climb up to the top of Mesa Roldan, the large formation rimming our small bay on the east.

On the beach at Agua Amarga looking up at the mesa to the east, scarred by ruins from the mining era.
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Steeper and more rugged than Rachael expected, so she turns back after she’s gotten up enough for a view. No sense ending the tour early with a fall.
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While enjoying the view she pauses to admire her new hiking shoes she picked up a few days ago.
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Looking down on Agua Amarga’s beach.
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Karen PoretThat’s an appropriate photo for Palm Sunday! Palms AND thorns!
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1 month ago
So she soon turns back and walks down to the beach.
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And walks the short distance west to admire the cliffs and small caves at the other end of the beach.
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And then heads up the hiking trail on the west side of the village.
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Where she finds me waiting for her, finally out the door on my own short hike.
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So we walk together for a short ways, until this trail too goes up more precariously than she’d like, and she drops down to the flats again.
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We’ll come back to my short hike shortly, but first let’s rap up Rachael’s outing.  She disappears from sight down a trail on the valley floor, while I continue on up to the top.  

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An hour or so later I’m on my way back to town for our lunch date when I look down and see Rachael far below.   She’s at a junction, trying to decide whether to add another short detour to her walk.  I see her staring at her map for awhile and then she finally commits herself and starts walking.  From the photos she comes back with, it looks like this detour was the best part of her walk. 

She’s made her decision.
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She’s going off that way, to where the trail ends at a small cirque-like cul-de-sac.
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She walks through a short acacia forest.
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Karen PoretThe previous photo looks like scotch broom..
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1 month ago
Acacia, right?
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Bill ShaneyfeltProbably

https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/75255-Acacia-saligna/browse_photos?place_id=6774
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2 months ago
And sees horses!
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And more dramatic, deeply eroded cliffs.
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And then she meets up with me just returning from my walk, and we head down to the beach to have lunch.  And later we’ll go out again for ice cream, but other than that we mostly just hang around in our hotel, lying around in the lounge chairs on our private patio, sheltered from the wind.  Nice day!

Oh, that’s right,  I took a hike too.  Might as well dump those photos in too.

The start of a long distance walking route that follows the coast west for as long as you want to walk - days, weeks even.
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The trail starts out easily enough.
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Here’s where Rachael caught up with me. To the right you see the trail angling up, which we missed somehow. If we’d found it, she probably would have gone up to the top here too.
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We aren’t together long. when she heads back down, I scramble up a bit of steepness to get back on the maintrail we missed earlier. We’re looking down here on the road we’ll bike out on tomorrow.
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Back on it.
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There’s not much color up here, but when I find it I stop for it.
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Views up on top are vast and inspiring.
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I don’t get far though - maybe another half mile when the trail drops steeply down to the next beach to the west.
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The heart says yes, the knees say no. The heart loses the vote, two to one.
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So I just stay on top and wander around off trail for awhile looking for interesting stuff, knowing I can just backtrack using the Garmin when I’ve had enough fun.
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I get a nice view down on the village and to the Mesa to the east.
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And find a little more color.
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Bill ShaneyfeltMaybe gold coin?

https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/199876-Pallenis-maritima/browse_photos

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pallenis_maritima
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2 months ago
But not much. This is pretty much it.
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Bill ShaneyfeltMaybe Mol-Albina?
https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/370735-Launaea-arborescens
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Bill ShaneyfeltLooks perfect.
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1 month ago
Not so colorful now, but maybe a few weeks ago.
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I’m surprised to see anyone else up here. They saw me out here wandering round and followed me, thinking it must be on the route. They eventually realized their mistake and turned back. Sorry, guys!
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Steve Miller/GrampiesDoes the one in the middle count as a splash of colour?
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Steve Miller/GrampiesGood point. He matches the flowers, alright.
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2 months ago
Kathleen ClassenNote the poles. Super helpful for the knees!
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Kathleen ClassenYeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve got some back in the Raven. They’re just a little too awkward to find a spot for on the bike.
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1 month ago
Kathleen ClassenTo Scott AndersonI know, and they can be a pain on the plane. We only travel with carry on and when in Newfoundland last June actually bought two more sets there rather than check our bags, which was a good thing as our luggage would have been on the plane to St. John’s but we weren’t. We spent the night in Toronto. Long story that. But man they make a difference on the knees when hiking. It is remarkable.
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1 month ago
And finally I make my way back to the trail and head back for lunch.
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And just before meeting up with Rachael again I find the prize of the day: a spiny-footed lizard. First lizard of the year!
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Bill ShaneyfeltA lizard!!

Great photo! and spot on ID!

https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/35430-Acanthodactylus-erythrurus
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2 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Bill ShaneyfeltThanks! It took me awhile - everything kept pointing me to an Iberian wall lizard, and I even found one matching photo that was misidentified as one. It didn’t really seem right though so I kept searching. Neat animal - I love the leopard spot legs.
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2 months ago
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