First time back since the 2017 fires

Southern view
From the Grape Stomp trail looking south towards San Pablo Bay.
User: Austin Explorer - 2/23/2020

Location: Bartholomew Park

Rating: 3stars
Difficulty: 3stars  Solitude: 3stars
Miles Hiked: 2.65 Miles  Elapsed Time: 1 hour, 39 minutes


Coppertone and I wanted a nearby hike that wouldn't eat up too much of our day today.  We were also curious about what the park looked like since the 2017 fires swept through the area.

The weather today was fantastic with a slight chill in the shade and warmth in the full Sun.

We opted for a hike comprised of the Grape Stomp, Top and Angels Flight Trails that loops around Benicia Lake near the highpoint of the park.  The small lake feeds into Arroyo Seco Creek, which was still flowing fairly well.  Fording it was not a problem.

There's no doubt that fire has played a major role here in the not too distant past.  However, it's comforting to see that even those areas that were obviously burned there is a great deal of vegetation that has grown back.  Large trees with singed ebony trunks nevertheless sprout green foliage high up in the canopy.  This wasn't the first time fire has come through here and it won't be the last.

The Bartholomew Winery and the nearby Buena Vista Winery were both spared destruction by the narrowest of margins.  On the way down the mountain along the Angel's Flight Trail we saw evidence of the hard work put in by first responders in the form of a fire break that cut across the trail.

By the time we got back to our car near noon the practically empty parking lot was full, so we were happy we didn't wait too long before heading out today.  We had purchsed quite a few bottles of wine in the last few weeks so we opted not to stop by the winery this time around.

Log Photos
Southern view
Arroyo Seco Creek
More stairs
Greenery and not so much