Carson Ridge Serpentine Flora
Tuesday, June 21, 2022 – 9 am to 1 pm
Field Trip Leader: Sherry Adams

Calycadenia multiglandulosa thumbSerpentine is less than 2% of the land area of California but accounts for about 15% of the rare plants

Join me for a walk on Carson Ridge through serpentine chaparral. We can either complete a loop hike of 3.5 miles: out Pine Mountain Fire Road, Oat Hill Fire Road, Old Sled Trail and then back to the parking area. However, if we are enjoying a slower pace we can make it a shorter out and back hike. There is some up and down on the whole loop, but the first half mile is fairly flat for those who want to just join us for the first bit and skip the climbing.

This is a great place to learn serpentine-specialist shrubs – leather oak (Quercus durata), Jepson’s ceanothus (Ceanothus jepsonii), and Tamalpais manzanita (Arctostaphylos montana ssp. montana), which are distinctive year-round. Our timing is good for the late season serpentine herbs such as rosin weed (Calycadenia multiglandulosa) and the rare Tamalpais lessingia (Lessingia micradenia ssp. micradenia) . We’ll also have a chance to take our lunch break in the shade of one of the few serpentine-specialist trees, Sargent cypress (Hesperocyparis sargentii).

Lessingia m. micradeniaThis is a fairly exposed walk and it can be quite warm and sunny.

I recommend a sun hat, plenty of water, and a lunch.

We’ll plan to be back to the vehicles by 1pm. Hiking poles are a good idea, and there are plenty of little plants to see, so close focus binoculars can be helpful if you have them.

We will meet at the Azalea Hill parking area, on the Bolinas-Fairfax road, 4 miles from Fairfax.

If you’d like a refresher on serpentine, there are a couple of articles in this older edition of Fremontia

Please sign up for this field trip by emailing Susan Schlosser. Susan will send you a link to the waiver.

Quercus durata IMG 1333 VS