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When the hills are green, and the creeks are running, the ocean has to take the back seat.
At least for me. You may disagree, especially when we’ve had steady surf…..

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But this year especially, with the displaced Los Angelenos clogging up our surf spots,
the empty wilderness has been my preference.

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However, finding some wilderness that’s empty has also become a challenge, given all the
“Corona refugees” that are off work and scouring the internet for new trails to explore.

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But, where there’s a will, there’s a way.
And thankfully, Goleta has lots of little nooks and crannies to get lost in.

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With our late season rains, even the tiniest creeks have swimming holes,
and that comes in real handy when it’s 80 degrees out.

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The short window of time that our hills are green is a powerful draw.

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Powerful, indeed.

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Early Spring, it looked like the rain was done, and things were already drying out.
But March and April brought some heavy rainfall, and a second wave of green erupted.

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This day, we enjoyed the show as a cloud dumped on Santa Cruz Island.

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My partner and I travel light and quiet, and don’t interfere with the local
( He always wears a leash and we never leave behind shit bags.)

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We saw more California Newts then we’ve seen in years. A good sign.
Of course we did not touch them.

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One day we stumbled on a pool with about 15 newts, many of them locked in the throes of
reproduction. A few sets appeared to have a third partner involved.
A nurse maid supervising?…..or a menage a trois?

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Saw lots of signs of the big guys. Prints and scat all over the place.

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Came across a few rattlers. It’s a good years for snakes.

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This little guy tricked me.
I thought it was a baby rattler with no rattles, but a friend that knows these things taught me
that Gopher snakes flatten their heads as a defensive mechanism.
Live and learn….

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Of course we didn’t completely turn our back on Mother Ocean.
We got a few fun sessions in.

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And even when it was flat, it was a beautiful Spring.

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This day I accidentally made Levi sand art, just by sitting on my ass.

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Another fun animal to see this time of year are whales.
See the little splash near the middle of this shot?

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Just stopped in for a surf check and this guy was greeting me.

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Another gorgeous day we stopped in at everybody’s favorite beach to check the surf.

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As usual, a happy Goleta family scene was in full effect.

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And some fun little rollers.

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Goleta goodness.

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We had a fun mix of hot summer like days, and cold rainy days. Often both in the same week.

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Kept everything nice and juicy.

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The back country got even more rain than we did.
And everybody’s favorite river was running fast and cold.

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And deep at places.

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Green grass and swimming holes. Doesn’t get much better….

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And overflowing reservoirs….

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This stretch of coast is unlike any other, from Point Mugu….

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….up to Point Conception.
And when you’re looking at it through the Green Window, it’s even more spectacular.

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So rest assured, when you’re done self isolating, there’s a big beautiful world waiting out there.

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And when you do get out there, please remember to pick up your poop bags….
We’re begging you.

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Viva Goleta!