The same ole same ole

I think there's something good about repetition.  My mom is probably shocked to hear me say this because I've never been good at doing the same thing, day in day out.  I like change and I don't like to be bored.  Most of my mom's challenging motherhood moments were probably when I was bored.

But we keep going back to Point Pinole.  Yes, the place is the same.  The parking lot is the same.  The trails are the same.  But every time we go we experience something different.  Sometimes we see flocks of Western Bluebirds.  We saw the Monarch Butterflies one time.  This last time we went down to the beach on San Pablo Bay and explored some big concrete piles.  The sun was setting, the water was still, birds were everywhere out in the tidal mud, and it was a whole new place to learn about.  

There's something very rewarding about doing the same thing over and over.  


What 0.81 miles looks like

0.81 miles.  That's how far the map says we went.  The grown-ups probably went 1.0 when you include some short side trips.  The kids, though.  They easily went 3-4 miles in the 3 hours we spent at Black Diamond Mines.

Their legs were in constant motion.  There were huge mounds of sandy dirt to climb.  Little paths between the manzanitas and sage bushes.  There were tunnels and caves.  Huge sandstone rocks to climb up, and then slide down.

I was a little bummed to know that the Greathouse Visitor Center is closed (scheduled to reopen in March!).  But there was plenty to do without it.  

Yesterday we went on our first Outside Kids outing of 2012.  And we didn't go far, but the kids had a lot of fun.  And I'm pretty sure that the grown-ups liked it too.

About it: 
  • Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve official website
  • How to get there - it's about 50 minutes from Berkeley by car.  For the bikers out there, you can take BART to Bay Point and ride 14 miles to the park. 
  • We walked from the parking lot at the end of Somerville Road up to the Hazel Atlas Portal, Powder Magazine and Stope (Numbers 5, 6 and 7 on the park's map).  We're still wondering what a Stope is.

Our next outing will be March 18.  More details on that later.