Morgan Territory Regional Preserve

Back in the day before all this recreational hiking – when hikers were known as explorers – in order to enjoy the thrill of the view from a high place, you were required to trudge up to that place. On foot, if you can believe it. Nowadays we let our cars do the climbing, especially if we hanker for the glories of Morgan Territory. When we arrive at the park’s staging area and pop the car door, we’re already 2,040 feet above sea level. No trudging required.

Ruby chalice clarkia, Blue Oak Trail.

Sunrise, Roger Epperson Ridge. Epperson supervised Round Valley, Black Diamond Mines and Morgan Territory for the East Bay Regional Park District. You might not have heard of him before now, but if those parks occupy a special place in your heart, you’ve seen his handiwork all over the place.

Butterfly mariposa lily, Prairie Falcon Trail.

Boulder and blue oak, Volvon Trail.

Mt. Diablo fairy lantern, Coyote Trail.

Laurels and oaks, Raven Trail.

Four layers: buckeyes, oaks and laurels, Highland Ridge, Mt. Diablo.

Storksbill filaree, Stone Corral Trail.

Bark peels from madrone, Prairie Falcon Trail.

Mt. Diablo's North Peak at dawn viewed from Highland Ridge.

Manzanita blossoms, Condor Trail.

A trio of valley oaks in January viewed from Epperson Ridge.

A valley oak welcomes morning sunlight on the Clyma Trail. 

Morning on the Prairie Falcon ledge. The canyon below is cut by the headwaters of Marsh Creek.

The panorama from my rock recliner along the Prairie Falcon Trail. Photo by Chris Erickson.

Bare oaks in January catch sunrise on Coyote Canyon.

Elegant brodeaia, Eagle Trail.

October dawn on Roger Epperson Ridge.