Thursday, September 25, 2014

Sept 24 (Day 267) - Getting into position for California sea watching, staying with another bike-birder!

After yesterday's big bird chase, Sonia and I had a leisurely morning hanging around Palo Alto, CA. As I attended Stanford University, I took a midday spin through the campus. It's good to see that the place hasn't crumbled in my absence. After that I climbed up over the coastal mountains towards my destination of Pescadero. This will serve as my base for at least tonight and tomorrow. I have used Google Maps for all of my navigation this year. It has done an incredible job of route finding, even in the most remote of areas. Today the program made a catastrophic rout finding error that left me cursing out loud.   Somehow it decided to loop me onto a mountain bike trail as opposed to either a paved or graded dirt road. I would guess that much of it was graded at 12-15%. I had to push the bike up a terrible "road" for 2 miles. During these 2 miles I gained ~1,000' of elevation. It was a complete nightmare. It sucked - period. I was exhausted when I finally did reach the top. There was much cursing and a near bike throw down. I guess that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.......

31 miles today

Otherwise today on the road was fairly uneventful. The really interesting day started when I arrived at  my host's house. I am actually staying with Mark Kudrav. Mark did a very involved green big year last year, 2013, in which he recorded 326 species in California. This actually set the North American record. More impressively, Mark did this while working a full-time job! A link to his blog from his year can be found here. We had a really nice time exchanging biking and birding stories this evening. It is really nice to commiserate with a fellow bike-birder about road mishaps, missed birds, and the like. We are going to spend some time seawatching tomorrow morning. I should have the chance to add a few new birds. There was also a Red-throated pipit reported by a very reliable observer ~20 miles north of here in Half Moon Bay. That would be a fantastic addition to the year!

Me and Mark tonight!


  1. Hey Dorian,

    Haven't checked in for awhile (looks like I have some catching up to do--Tacoma to Bay Area) but it's good to see you made it back to the farm. Best of luck with the seawatch and RETPI.

    P.S. Old La Honda is just about as steep as Windy Hill!