Archive for January, 2013

The hiking book: Hiking the San Francisco Bay Area (Falcon Guides)
The distance: 6 miles
The CityGirls rating: 5

The highlights of this hike were definitely the sandstone rocks and massive boulders strewn throughout the park (didn’t see that coming, now did you?).

Sandstone rock formation, Castle Rock State Park

On one of the first nice weekends we’d had in a while, we chased the sun down the coast toward Santa Cruz, where we found sunny 70 degree weather at Castle Rock State Park.

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The hiking book: Hiking the San Francisco Bay Area (Falcon Guides)
The distance: 4 miles
The CityGirls rating: 6

Ten million years ago, this preserve was an active volcano, spreading lava and volcanic ash around the area that became the ridges and formations of the Berkeley Hills. Mastodons, hipparions, camels and prongbucks once roamed here, and their remains have been found in the quarries that excavated much of the infilled rock and lava down to the original volcanic crater, Round Top.

20130106_quarried-hill

The subduction process that caused this ancient volcano is the same one that, moving northward over millions of years, caused the eruptions of Mount St. Helens.

That’s great and all, you may be saying, but how did this volcano fall over? Well, as the guidebook says, “Welcome to California.” After its period of activity ended, earthquakes “folded, titled, crumpled and tossed” Round Top into its current form.

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