Wintertime at Sandy Wool Lake

Sandy Wool Lake_edited

This past weekend we headed to Sandy Wool Lake at Ed R. Levin County Park for a much-needed walk in nature. Wintertime is a good time of year to visit the park when temperatures are cool, and the dry, golden brown grasses of summer turn green under the rainy days of winter.

When last at the park several years ago, the lake had been drained, and the remaining sludge littered with tires and other household garbage. The severe, long-standing drought in California had necessitated emptying the lake to conserve water. Without the lake, the park felt lifeless.

On this trip, to our delight, the lake was filled with water and an abundance of shorebirds, waterfowl, and other small birds. As it was early January, the hills to the east of the lake were still covered by a carpet of dormant brown grasses just beginning to show hints of green growth. Closer to the San Francisco Bay, the hills to the west, were covered in newly sprouted grasses.

We walked the trail around the lake which was wet after a few prior days of rain. While we tried to bypass the muddiest parts of the trail, by the end of our walk, our feet looked rather funny with a variety of leaves and twigs stuck to the bottoms of our shoes. Muddy shoes aside, as you can see from the photos, it was a perfect day at the lake.

P.S. I’m not looking forward to cleaning those muddy shoes. Also, I’m not a bird expert so please chime in if I’ve incorrectly identified any of the birds shown in the photos.

Inspiration: Growth.

22 thoughts on “Wintertime at Sandy Wool Lake

  1. So close to the populated areas and so rural! Wow, nice photos of the birds and the views. Glad to see that the lake has water and that the little rains have started the winter greening of the hills.

    1. Thank you, Patricia. Yes. It’s a small oasis just up the hill from the busy city of Milpitas. With more rain coming tomorrow, I expect the lagging brown hills to green up quickly.

    1. Good idea! I truly don’t want to clean them. They have heavy treads, and mud and stones are stuck in them pretty good. It’s raining today. I’ll wear them on my walk and see how much muck I can get rid of stepping in puddles. 🙂

      1. Thanks Donna. We broke out of the frigid cold today with a high just shy of 32! We haven’t seen anything that warm yet this year.

        Still we get that from time to time. It seems your drought lasted a long time.

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