I drove up the dusty road on the chaparral-clad Western face of Mount Konocti. A parking lot is being bulldozed high up for the newly established pubic-access tract.
Below, to the West and North lay Big Valley and the lake.
Chaparral begins to give way to more pine and fir on the Northern flank of the mountain over Soda Bay. Spared some of the solar blast, the mountain maintains just enough moisture to support a micro climate.
The steepest part of the North face supports the Black Forest, which is dominated by Douglas fir and bay laurel. The forest has its own charismatic denizens not seen on other parts of the mountain: Stellars jays and pileated woodpeckers.
Black Forest is under the protection of the Lake County Land Trust.