Sunday, June 28, 2009

Elevations

Recently Cynthia and I met some birders from Chicago at Eaton Canyon here in Pasadena. As a memento and also as an appreciation for our help in showing them the local birds, we had our picture taken together. When they sent me via email a copy of the said photo, I got the confirmation of something that I had suspected for quite some time now. I'm putting on weight!!

That fact was further evidenced when my wife and I decided to go to higher elevations - up in the San Gabriel mountains where birding usually is better in summer. The thought of adding not just year birds but lifers as well gave me a more than adequate motivation to try some places that we have not visited before. Only to discover that it would necessitate an arduous hike of 4 miles with an altitude gain of 1200 feet to be able to see the birds that we were hoping for. I took one look at the zig-zagging trail before us - already gaining 50 feet in elevation for the first 10 yards alone. I. Chickened. Out.

And so we contented ourselves at birding the places that required no intensive walking on our part. Thankfully we still saw a few species. Then again most were too far off for anything other than "documentary" shots. Except, of course, for the Mountain Chickadees who are always accommodating for picture-taking.



Our high elevation adventure (or the lack of it) got me thinking. Perhaps it is time that I start "working out" - you know, like taking a daily hike. Our neighborhood has a lot of undulations that would be great for some serious leg stretching, lung-bursting (and waist-line reducing) exercises.

Now if I could only put those thoughts into real action....

2 comments:

vcbirding said...

Do it! Work out a little bit so you can see the higher elevation species! If I still lived in South Pasadena, I'd do it with you!

Matthew P.
Simi Valley, Ca.

Bob and Cynthia Kaufman said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Matthew! I have started walking around the neighborhood (We live behind the OSH hardware in Fair Oaks) and hopefully I'd be in better shape before the summer ends.