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Explore nature on Sonoma Mountain with naturalist Sarah Reid

Jack London State Historic Park hike on January 29

On Saturday, January 29, certified California Naturalist Sarah Reid will lead a hike to seek out the natural wonders of Sonoma Mountain along the trails of Jack London State Historic Park.

Hikers on this slow-to-moderately paced, four-mile hike will encounter giant madrone trees, towering coast redwoods, animal lodges on the forest floor, moss, possibly some colorful mushrooms, and even fascinating turrets made by spiders. The group may glimpse songbirds, hear Pileated woodpeckers making their loud echoing calls, or catch sight of other native creatures darting about in their woodland neighborhood.

In late January, it’s possible to see early wildflowers such as Milkmaids, sometimes called “the first sign of spring.” The trail offers scenic views from Mays Clearing near Jack London Lake.

Historically, Sonoma Mountain has been an important place for the Pomo, Coast Miwok and Wappo people, as well as for Jack and Charmian London, who made their home at the base of the mountain.

An avid hiker and equestrian, Sarah has been leading outdoor education, programs, and events in Sonoma County since the late 1970’s and has been a volunteer in California State Parks and Sonoma County Regional Parks since 2004. She completed the UC California Naturalist Certificate Program in 2017 and has taught a Land Management Seminar for Sonoma State University Center for Environmental Inquiry for four years. A repeat presenter at the California Trails & Greenways Conference, she has managed trail-riding events for equestrians, participates in wildlife studies, and provides submissions to iNaturalist, a joint initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society.

During the hike, Sarah will make connections between the wildness of the mountain and humans today. Who lives here now? What does that mean to our health and our experience in nature?

The hike begins at 9:30 a.m. and will conclude at noon. The group will meet in the Ranch parking lot, to the right of the park’s entrance kiosk. The hike will be cancelled in the event of heavy winds or rain.

Participation is limited to 15 people. This hike is best for those ages 12 and older.

Trails on the hike are a combination of graveled roads and packed dirt hiking trails. Some portions of the trail might be uneven so trekking poles may be helpful. Hikers are advised to bring water, a snack, layered clothing, and good hiking shoes. Reservations are required and can be made at jacklondonpark.com.

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