Monday, May 30, 2011

Doolittle Dr., Oakland - May 28, '11

Walking Distance: 2.2 miles
Walking Time: 1 hr., 21 min. (3:39 - 5:00 p.m.)
Start and End Point: Martin Luther King Regional Shoreline, public parking lot, Oakland, CA

This afternoon's walk along the Airport Channel in Martin Luther King Shoreline (park area), and along Doolittle Drive was cut short when a light sprinkle turned into a heavier rain. Surprisingly, this was the first time I'd ever gotten caught in a shower without an umbrella since I started walking around the Bay. Usually, by late May, showers are few and far between. I had to tuck my camera into my jacket and sprint back to the car. No harm done.

By the time I made it back to my car, I was the only one left in the park. I had parked near the boat launching area, where a family had been out on a jetski earlier in the Airport Channel (water).

The only company that remained: lots of Canada geese and some goslings, and a few ducks -- some of which I photographed at the start of this walk, on my way (north) up to the Bill Osborne Model Airplane Field, which may be located in the very southern tip of Alameda, and not Oakland proper. To get here from the park, you'll need to walk along a busy section of Doolittle Drive (double yellow lines on the Bay Trail map) with rapidly moving cars. But, if you decide to brave this stretch on foot, you'll also have a good view of the Oracle (Oakland A's) stadium across the water, to the east.

Goslings and ducklings are wonderful to photograph. Having a zoom lens on my camera helps a great deal. I don't walk with a tripod or any other fancy gear that would weigh me down, so I'm always hoping to get a few good, clear, handheld shots. Sometimes, I shoot pictures while walking, or without looking at the LCD display/viewfinder. I've gotten some entertaining shots this way.

Occasionally I run into lost items or toys that have been left behind in odd places -- such as this Spiderman action figure that someone left on a trash can in the park. Life is never dull if you pay attention. And, while people across the parking lot earlier may have wondered why on Earth I was photographing a trash can, I'm OK with that.

Wildlife Sightings:
9 ducks; 43 Canada geese (including 8 goslings); 11 sea gulls; 1 crow; 2 unidentified brownish shorebirds (UBBs); 1 hubcap; 1 killdeer; 4 snowy egrets; 6 terns; 1 cormorant; 4 little brown jobs (LBJs); 1 starling; 2 blackbirds; 3 balls (1 old tennis ball, 2 kids balls); 1 rusty screw; 1 black oystercatcher; 1 black-crowned night heron (flying overhead).

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