Tuesday, August 3, 2010

West County and Joe Rodota Trails

With a whole day ahead of me, I decided I would splurge and after going to meet an appraiser head out for a solo walk somewhere in Sonoma County. Problem was I had no idea where to go! I stopped at Costco to see if there was a Sonoma hiking book on the table there. But... the ones they had didn't have hikes lone enough for what I had in mind...
I decided to stop at the first tourist office I could find after crossing the county line. In Petaluma I went into the tourist office and asked the women there is she had any regional trail maps. She brought out one that seemed to fit the bill. The West County and Joe Rodota Trails, sitting on what used to be the train tracks.... All in all the trails go for 14 miles. I wanted to walk 12-15 miles today so I found what looked like the half way point and started in Petaluma.
In Sebastopol I stumbled on a street that was truly whimsical and wonderful. Each yard had a sculpture by artist Patrick Amiot. He creates these splendid creatures from watering cans and old car parts. I LOVE THEM!!!!!

Eventually I found my way to the trail and parked my car off the road to head off on another new adventure. I love adventures. I want a life of adventures.......

The feeling of heading off down a long trail, with no idea where you will go or what you will see... makes me feel so free and happy.

Along this trail there are vineyards and orchards, homes and padlocks. There are more blackberry bushes than anywhere I have walked before... and guess what some of those berries even looked ready to eat! Maybe that is because all walk long there was NO FOG!

I saw a few people picking them...maybe for a berry pie.

Sebastopol is known as being very "organic". Organic foods, organic people.... And a few amazing homes that have it all....

I'll take one please.... especially if it comes with all that beautiful land.

It was a good day to pull out the pink hat from last year's walk.

Rustic fences lined some properties...

You leave the trail at Grafton and walk by its cute little downtown area....

I was on such a mission I didn't read this sign telling us all about the trails. Maybe we can blow it up and read it now?

I don't know what this abandoned piece of equipment is...but its army.

Sebastopol is known for apples too. They have an apple festival in August. Better not be August 13th. I'm busy. WINE WARS!!!!

Irrigation ponds..


Apple trees

Little bridges and boardwalks.

??? Irrigation or sewage.. It didn't smell so maybe the former.


When I was a little girl and they would ask what do you want to be when you grow up, I would always say... I want to be a cowgirl. I saw myself living in the country with horses and gardens and a lake nearby... Maybe I should move to Sonoma.

Abandoned apple orchard, should I go picking....


Wineries... I didn't stop.

Chicken coop.

Vintage homes

Not so vintage but beautiful

Wild flowers

THE END of the trail at Forestville. Forestville is sort of the gateway (from this direction) to the Russian River area.

It was past my lunch time so I walked into town to grab a bite.

I had a couple of tacos and an aqua fresca and off I went for the return walk.

This is where you catch the trail in Forestville. It isn't marked. Walk down First Street and look to your left for the red cone.

Then off you go. A lot of this trail is shady which is so welcome in 90 degrees!

There are those horses again. I guess I really should pack it up and move to Sonoma before I won't be able to ride the range.

Barn standing over the vineyard.

Things at a distance have their own beauty, but things up close can stun you.

Iconic Barn

Bees on Thistle

Country mailboxes

Like a snowflake, the Queen Anne's Lace were scattered everywhere along the route.

I finished up and headed home. With a big smile on my face. This was my kind of day. Now I have work tomorrow and prep for Wine Wars whenever I can sneak it in. I hope there will be a lot of people. I hope we make a lot of money for Susan G Komen. I hope we are able to give at least one more woman the lifetime she deserves.
ARE you coming?

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