Silene laciniata ssp. californica sm Bootjack 4367

Sunday,  May 5,  2019     10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Field Trip Leader: Terry Gosliner

Early May permits us to see the beginning of the transition from Spring to Summer flowering seasons. The route from Bootjack requires a short climb to the realtively level Old Stage Road. We pass through mixed evergreen forest into a chaparral area that alternates between serpentine rock and graywacke sandstone with sharp contrast between the different rock and soil types. We will continue on about a mile and a half to the West Point Inn, where you can use restrooms and rehydrate before we head downhill via the Nora Trail to the Matt Davis trail. We return back to Bootjack along the Matt Davis Trail. Interesting plants we may see include many serpentine endemics such as Jepson’s Ceanothus (Ceanothus jepsonii), the Mt. Tamalpais manzanita (Arctostaphylos montana ssp. montana). We will also see chaparral pea (Pickeringia montana) and yerba santa (Eriodictyon californicum) as dominant bushes and pass through the unique serpentine Sargent cypress forest (Hesperocyparis sargentii). At a wonderful serpentine spring we should see blooming western Azalea (Rhododendron occidentale) and seep monkey flower (Erythranthe guttata formerly Mimulus). Many other chaparral species are evident such as the bush poppy (Dendromecon rigida) and we even pass by a small second growth grove of redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens). Numerous other surprises await us as we hit this early peak bloom of Mt. Tam’s rich diversity.

Meet at the Bootjack parking/picnic and campground area. There is an $8.00 parking fee.

Trail length round trip is approximately 3.5 miles with a bit of initial steep climb and some downhill and switchbacks along the Nora Trail.

From US 101 take the Stinson Beach exit at Mill Valley towards Stinson Beach on CA 1. After 2.6 miles, veer right and up on to Panoramic Hwy towards Mt. Tamalpais and Muir Woods. Continue on Panoramic Hwy past the Muir Woods turnoff. Continue 4.1 miles until the Bootjack picnic area and campground parking lot. Proceed to the kiosk to pay your parking fee. Exact change is required. A bathroom and water are available at the parking lot.

Terry Gosliner, is a CNPS member and a Curator in the Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Geology at the California Academy of Sciences, where he specializes in the evolution and systematics of nudibranchs (sea slugs). While his research focuses on marine biology and often takes him to coral reefs in the Philippines, he has a life-long passion for native California plants. As a child he grew up in Marin and explored the plants of the Mt. Tamalpais Watershed from an early age.