Hiking the Holler~

The Holler is surrounded by thousands of empty acres.

It has many oak groves, and permanent and seasonal creeks running through it.

900 of these acres are set aside as a permanent nature preserve, and many more 1000’s of acres are still free from human development.

There are no hiking trails or public access, but we live adjacent to the preserve and hike it several times a week.

The Holler was first settled in the 1890’s and consisted of 2,700 acres. It was a working ranch for much of its history. Crumbling fences and old ranch dirt roads remain. We hike the dirt roads, and game trails, which are everywhere.

This is the lower pasture below our house, and this is where we access the preserve.

Since people are not here, The Holler is full of wildlife and has an entirely different feel from hiking in parks that people frequent. This natural ecosystem is unique for over-developed Southern California.

We see oodles of tracks, coyotes, bobcat, cougar, raccoon, but no deer. There are no deer because there are too many predators for them to survive. There are lots of kill sites and bones scattered around, but I will spare you photos of these, even though I have them.

And of course there are hundreds of birds! Cheers to you from the still wild Holler~

328 thoughts on “Hiking the Holler~

  1. These are lovely scenery. As I have seen many beautiful pictures of birds from Holler, Holler is also a heaven for birds and wild lives too. I am glad to learn there are efforts to preserve spaces/lands from human development.

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  2. I’m on the next plane, I’ll eco camp for about a month. That should be enough time to get a feel of the place. I love natural rivers, shallow then wide, walk across. I love undisturbed land and making sure it stays the way the Indians left it. Have a great day. πŸ™‚

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  3. I love your opening statement that the Holler is surrounded by thousands of empty acres. And then you go on to write about the life and joy that are contained in these same acres . What a wonderful way to remind me that we must integrate our lives with the glorious world around us.

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    • Thank you Rebecca ❀ 10 1/2 years ago I worried I made a mistake moving here, I wasn't used to living amongst all the wild things. Now I could never happily return to living in civilization and the wild critters are my best neighbors!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yeeks! That is soooo cold! I recently listened to this climatologist talk about the polar vortex when it splits twice, and then, rarely splits three times, which is has just apparently done. It means very cold weather has flown to where you are. Love to you Resa and stay warm ❀

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  4. Wow! How fortunate you are Cindy to live on the edge of nature! We share that wondrous experience here in Virginia although we are on the edge of only a 700 acre tract. Still, there are bob cats, turkeys, foxes, bears, and deer.

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    • It took some getting used to, 10 1/2 years in, I am used to being here, Iove it, and could never ever live in the suburbs or city again. But it is definitely not for everyone. Lots of people would not like it. I’m glad I am not one of them.

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  5. Your photos of The Hollar are just as beautiful as all of those you’ve shared and taken while on all those awesome wonderful trips taken abroad and in state. I have been busy but not so much at writing. So, wanted to stop in and say, “Hi”. Take care and God bless, Cindy.

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  6. What a beautiful place! Isn’t it hard to leave on your trips? (Kidding. The trips are likely made even more enjoyable by knowing what you are returning to.)

    The last photograph–a great gard-bird looking out for all the little lives in the Holler. I know he has to eat, but still it appears that he is fiercely, almost passionately, protective.

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    • You are so prescient. The hawks watch us all the time, they accompany us on hikes, along with the hummingbirds. It has been 10 1/2 years now that we have lived here. They seem to accept us as a non-harmful part of their ecosystem. They seem to watch us, know us, and greet us when we return from a long trip. We have a very long and steep driveway. As soon as we drive down after we are gone for a long time, they are are close in the air seemingly greeting us. I always feel happy seeing them, because I am back with the hawks.
      When I am home, they fly super low by the windows and make me get up and let me get photos, and they let me get close too, when they alight on trees.
      When I see them in the air, I intuitively know they are here, and I feel better.

      Liked by 1 person

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