A steep, deep creek bed borders our path to the beach. It's thick with trees and scrub and, though houses line the opposite rim, there's enough open space that the ravine is laced with wildlife trails. We've seen California quail here, rabbits and roadrunners, raccoons and skunks and hawks and owls and, of course, coyotes. Their scent drives the dogs wild. They race around, trace the coyotes' footsteps, noses to the ground, the hair on Jake's back raised in a goofy Mohawk.
Today they discovered this arch in the underbrush, the coyotes' front door. It's a good-sized opening that leads to a slender path, a twining tube down into the creek bed. Too small for the dogs to follow, not that I'd ever let them as, with a slew of new homes eating up ancient habitat, the wild things here have enough of a struggle to survive.
Those quail I mentioned? Gone for several years now. Ditto the road runner, the great horned owl and the red tailed hawk. Now it's coyotes and bunnies, and a pair of labs doing a bunch of showy running. And, unless one of us stops her, Maisie, rolling in a pile of poop, her take on haute couture, Eau de Coyote. Ooh la la.