After flying for a little while at the electric plane flying area, we took an afternoon hike. We should have reversed the order. Nearly all of the trails were in shadow by the time we got there, and parts were covered with ice! (Non-Californians are laughing; but it's awfully rare in coastal California to slip on ice covering the trail, and we weren't dressed for that sort of weather.)
The squirrels were active, calling to each other and dropping buckeye and acorn bits from the treetops. One squirrel decided we didn't belong on his trail. We watched him make flying leaps from one bay tree trunk to another, until finally he rested on the trunk at the edge of the trail, just above our eye level and perhaps three feet away. He peeked around the tree and glared at us, grunting at our effrontery.
I grunted back, and the obstreperous squirrel leapt into action, racing up the treetrunk to where it bowed over the trail, barking down at us (I barked back), racing to another vantage point, barking again.
Belligerence was rewarded. The simian trespassers quailed under such a display of squirrel valor, and retreated down the trail, leaving the precious buckeye stash unmolested.
(The invaders may also have been giggling a bit as they continued their hike. But let that be. The important thing is, they are gone and were not able to steal any nuts.)
[ 23:40 Dec 03, 2004 More nature/squirrels | permalink to this entry | comments ]