John's CDT
Saturday, April 24, 2004
What can you learn from looking at the tadpole of an endangered toad?

Today I got dropped off at Civett Flats Campground and hiked back the 11 miles to Lake Morena. Toward the end, at Boulder Oaks Campground, I saw a sign announcing that the campground was closed during the Southwestern Arroyo Toad's breeding season.
Just past the campground was, I think, "the" stream that held the tadpoles. I stopped to pull some trash out of the stream and noticed the darting of small fish, which I quickly identified as tadpoles.

I looked at them.

They were just tadpoles wiggling around trying to be in the warm shallow water without being dinner. They didn't know they were threatened. I thought about watching the sea otters growing up. In Monterey Bay, Pacific Grove, they were abundant. I always saw the amazing little guys in the mostly big surf.

What did I learn? That these creatures live life and man intrudes by hunting or habitat distruction. Either they make it or they don't.
Saturday at ADZPCTKO
Learned about a few good backpacking things today at the various contests: Great camp shoes, a solution to my cooking problem, and how hikers with few resources choose to spend their money.
I'd seen the potential camp shoes once in a catalog, but dismissed them. Today seeing them and knowing the best place to buy them turned my opinion around. I'm actually overjoyed to have information about really light camp shoes.
My current cooking problem came about because both Ziploc and Glad stopped making stand-up bags. Today I saw something I'd forgotten about: a bag cosy. It will help me cook most of my meals neatly.

Finally, at the g-force contest, I got to know which sleeping bag Billy Goat used: the Nanutuck Arc Alpinist, the exact sleeping bag I want to get. Billy Goat's not a man of resources, but he spent the money on a really good bag.

I spent some time with Class of 2003. Nice folks.

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