On Sunday D. and I went back to Water Dog Lake Park, starting from the other end of the canyon on Lake Road Trail. Here's some of the pics I took.
Now, this is my kind of place!
We see neither.
Around the first bend, the trail opens up to a view across the canyon, past dried up thistles lining the path.
A narrow side trail splitting off to run next to the creek, below the main trail.
The side trail soon gets difficult with thick poison oak and mucky ground, so we double back onto the main trail.
One of the ubiquitous manholes we found along the trail, about every 200 feet or so.
Poison oak gets a head start on its fall colors.
I like poison oak turning red early. It makes it a lot easier to identify on the trail and keep my distance.
Another view across the canyon.
And before we know it, the lake is in view.
Coyote mint grows by the water's edge.
Water Dog Lake has an algae forest wilderness in it.
We sit for a spell on a rock outcrop by the side of the lake. A pair of mallards has staked out a spot for themselves nearby.
Pit bull Mongo eagerly awaits his people choosing a stick from the woods for him to retrieve in the lake.
While swimming back to shore with a tree branch in his jaws, he puffs and chuffs, sounding like a steam engine.
Jack, Zoe and Mongo have a frolic in the water.
They are all supposed to be retrieving their own toys but keep on going after each others'.
The presence of the dogs does not deter the mallard pair from their routine, which includes swimming closer to us.
"Here, let me nibble on your foot, dear."
"We saw you unwrap that granola bar! Here we come!"
"Hullo, nice person with the granola bar!"
"Never mind her, look at me!"
"I'm too sexy for my beak, too sexy for my beak, so sexy it's sweet."
"I'm ever so handsome, don't you think? Now feed me! You know you want to. Pitty pease?"
(We don't. We know better than to feed wildlife.)
It's a buckeye sky overhead.
A wood duck nest box among the cattails.
Waterworld: shallows overgrown with arroyo willows.
Looking over the thicket of cattails in the shallows toward the dam.
Ithuriel's spear blossoms along a small trail at the far end of the lake.
Water Dog Lake.