We're not the only ones on the planet...
...remember the creatures great and small. Don't forget to look down. While these kinds of caterpillars remind me of childhood and they're so soft and fuzzy... I know they spell a bad year for the oak trees. They're hungry little buggers.
Novato IS off the beaten path...
Novato IS off the beaten path for most tourists. This is the most populous town in Marin County, however. It's mainly known as a 'bedroom community', with people living in Novato, and then commuting down the Highway 101 corridor to San Francisco each day for work.
Once was my home and now it's home again
"Home sweet home"
Hi all and welcome to my childhood hometown! After 16 years since my inital departure, I've moved back to Novato. And boy is my father happy! "Hello neighbor," he exclaimed upon news that my offer had been accepted on a home.
I just moved in to the house on June 4, so I'm mostly busy unpacking boxes, putting together furniture and trying not to kill my pretty gardens. However, look for more content as I re-explore this town.
For the month prior to moving to this house, I lived in Sausalito... oh, picturesque Sausalito
My new home is within walking distance to numerous breakfast, lunch and dinner spots, as well as several bars, my gym, etc. Many tips coming!
Well we had a pond when we bought the house... but we went on vacation, it leaked and we returned home to a very shallow puddle with no fish. D'oh! Now we have a new pond, made with a heavy-duty plastic tub... no fish yet, but after the water has conditioned a couple months, we'll add some fish.
BURDELL HOUSE & PETALUMA RIVER
Through land sales and wills the property came to belong to Dr. Burdell, a dentist. The Burdell mansion was expanded and converted from wood frame gabled home to a stucco 26 room flat roofed mansion in 1911 for the princely sum of $15,000. Interior fireplaces and second story veranda were added. White columns lined the facade toward the garden. With the addition of electrical lighting, the Burdell mansion became the premier residence in Marin County. In 1969 the mansion was damaged in an electrical fire. Hippies and flower children took over the home and Sergeant Pepper and his Lonely Heart Band squatted there for a while.
The 2.6 mile Loop Trail is moderately difficult gaining 1000 foot in elevation. The trails dirt road follows a stone lined creek to a dam reservoir all built by Chinese laborers. The dam captured underground spring runoff conducted through miles of lead pipes to water Burdell Mansion’s rock gardens, lily ponds and fountain in their heyday. Pipe remnants can be seen along the trail.
The trail narrows and switchbacks through shady oak-bay-madrone-buckeye trees traversing the east face of Mt. Burdell. Blue jays raucously noted my passing as two gray squirrels stopped their antics to watch me, then jumped through trees to frolic on the ground. Lizards skittered across the trail into crumbling fall leaves at trailside making more noise to catch my attention than if they just sat still. Heading up switchbacks, I walked parallel to circling vultures. A distant hawk cried while crows chatter and gossiped to keep me company. As you get higher, the bay and river views get better. In spring the wildflowers: shooting star, milkmaids, blue-eyed grass, iris and buttercup are stunning.
For avid hikers, the challenging 8.3 mile hike to Mt. Burdell at 1558’ cuts off the Loop Trail, and returns the same route.