No bats in my belfry! Pinnacles, 5/5/14, Monday

Here's what the national park brochure sez about today's hike, in part:  "Bear Gulch Cave is a talus cave created when boulders formed a roof over a narrow canyon.  Some cave areas are narrow and twisting with low ceilings and uneven footing.  Passing through may require scrambling over rocks and wading through water.  The cave is dark; use a flashlight."  That sums it up, all of it.  In addition, Gear Gulch Cave hosts a maternal colony of Townsend's big-eared bats, and because this is the time of year they breed and raise pups, one small part of the cave was closed to the public.  We didn't see any bats, big-eared or otherwise, which was OK with us!  

A good place to begin our hike! 

Looks as if I might be swallowed up in a spider hole - yikes! 

Glad I'm not any wider....

Getting to the cave involved a nice little hike, but when we entered the talus cave, we fervently hoped the earth would NOT move... if you get my drift.  No quakes, please!

We encountered plenty of dark areas in Bear Gulch Cave, but my little point 'n shoot camera doesn't favor pictures under those conditions.   You get the lighted ones.  Being in, under and surrounded by these colossal boulders causes a person to feel quite small.  And a little bit afraid ....

But, when you're out, you are out.  We continued on up to the reservoir.

You just don't want to hear the words:  Look out Below!

Looking down on the boulder (right) and steps in the above photo.

Suddenly we were at the reservoir.

Jimmy clambered down to find a flat place for our lunch.

This bold fella heard the granola bar being unwrapped, and magically appeared,
and he was very hungry.

Starving to death, even.  Beggar!

After eating (sharing) lunch, we continued on up Chalone Peak Trail to this point,
where we sat and chatted, admiring the spectacular views. 

I saw a face here, but I couldn't match a creature to the face.

Eventually we made our way down, yet we were still high above these massive tooth-like rocks.  

Woolly Bluecurls -- aren't they different?

I gasped when I saw this harmless snake only because I nearly stepped on it.  After taking its picture, it lazily slithered across our trail into the brush on the other side.  It was between two and three feet long. 

The sign reads:  Tourist Trap. Climber access to the top. Group size limits in effect. 12 people total. This rock grouping may not look large, but if we were standing close to the rock base, it would loom far above our heads.  Be a crazy climb!  (we passed on it, you can be sure) 

Our hike wasn't especially long, maybe three miles, but it was certainly diverse!  When we returned to Tergel and after showers, we sat outside to enjoy a cuppa coffee and the balance of our afternoon. Across the road from our campsite, I spied nine tom turkeys moving thru the grass.  Made me think of dinner!
What a great day!


  1. I think that rock looks like a camel head.

  2. I think we need to visit this place!!

  3. Yes to Judy and Yes to Nannie!


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