Tracking and Journaling Elk!

In November, the North Coast Nature Journal Club will go back to Tomales Point for a second chance to see the elk during the tail end of their breeding season! We will have an opportunity to apply some of the tracking skills that we learned in  the last class to the habitat of these 200-500 pound ungulates.  Throughout the trip we will be surrounded by biodiverse coastal prairie, a vast view of the ocean, and scenic coves and cliffs. Can you believe this is available within a few hours drive from San Francisco? We have also seen coyotes lounging, bobcats patrolling,  harrier hawk fly-bys, and cruising peregrines, in addition to fascinating wildflowers and native bees. For the instruction aspect we will focus on how to apply a tracking perspective to add another layer of insight into your nature journaling. There will also be instruction on how to create compelling landscape sketches so be sure to bring your watercolors if you have them.Tule elk view of tomales bay

The weather is variable at this coastal location so wear layers and be prepared for everything. The hiking will be moderately strenuous due to the distances we will try to cover but the terrain will not be too technical. Wear comfortable hiking shoes, bring a folding stool, binoculars, and a potluck item to share on the trail. This location is not scooter friendly.

We will meet at 10 am at the Tomales Point trailhead parking lot at the very end of pierce point road near the old white barns. Look for people standing around with sketchbooks. This excursion will go longer than our usual meetup to take advantage of this special opportunity. 10am-4pm, potluck lunch at 12:30. Check this site the evening before the trip for weather updates. Our rainy day plan is to go to the Bear Valley Visitor center in Point Reyes where there are wonderful displays and covered areas to nature journal.

This trip is limited to 15 people. Email or message me directly to save your spot. Marley339 at gmail.com

$20 suggested donation. No one turned away for lack of funds.

Enjoy and Journal at Heart’s Desire Beach!

In August, the North Coast Nature Journal Club is in for a treat! We are going to escape the heat but still get outside at Heart’s Desire Beach in Tomales Bay State Park! This gorgeous and sheltered beach is nestled between a biodiverse forest and the scenic Tomales Bay. In addition to endless botanical subjects to investigate we will have expansive vistas waiting to be painted.

We will focus on techniques for cultivating curiosity and organizing information on the page. We will also have ample opportunities to practice landscapitos in an incredible setting.

The temperature will be relatively mild but we will be in and out of the sun and despite the protected location wind will probably pick up as the day progresses. Hats will be useful and comfortable layered clothing is essential.  Wear comfortable shoes, bring a folding stool if you have one, a potluck item to share, utensils for yourself and water to drink. There is a bathroom on site. We will go for a short walk on fairly even dirt trails and some sand and end up at some picnic tables. Scooters can be accommodated but wheelchairs will probably not be able to work.

For more information about the location: http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=470

We will meet at 9 am in the parking lot. (earlier than our usual start time) Look for people standing around with sketchbooks.  Bring a potluck item to share for lunch around 12:30. Bring food that you can carry with you on the trail.

$8 parking fee at this location

$20 suggested donation.

This class is limited to 12 people. Please email me to reserve your spot.

Draw Majestic Elk and Epic Landscapes!

In September we will hike out on Tomales Point in Marin County to see the elk herds during their rut and enjoy the overall epic scenes! The Tule elk will be on their most dramatic behavior this time of year and we will get an opportunity to document it in our journals. Last year it was great! We will focus on learning how to draw ungulates, how to draw antlers, and how to creatively depict action sequences in your journal. There will also be plenty of opportunity for painting landscapitos.

The weather is variable at this coastal location so be prepared for everything. The hiking will be moderately strenuous due to the distances we will try to cover but the terrain will not be too technical. Wear comfortable hiking shoes, bring a folding stool, binoculars, and a potluck item to share on the trail.

We are back on our normal schedule so we will meet at 10 am at the Tomales Point trailhead parking lot at the very end of pierce point road near the old white barns. Look for people standing around with sketchbooks. This excursion will go longer than our usual meetup to take advantage of this special opportunity. 10am-4pm, potluck lunch at 12:30.

Be prepared for Nature Journaling goosebumps and a good dose of charismatic mammalian megafauna!

$20 suggested donation. No one turned away for lack of funds.

Second Chance Elk at Tomales Point!

In November we will hike back out to Tomales Point for a second chance or a double dose of the Tule Elk! We went once in September and it was awesome! There should still be some of the mating season behavior at this time of year and we will get an opportunity to document it in our journals. We will focus on learning how to draw ungulates, how to draw antlers, and how to creatively depict action sequences in your journal. There will also be plenty of opportunity for painting landscapitos.

The weather is variable at this coastal location so be prepared for everything. The hiking will be moderately strenuous due to the distances we will try to cover but the terrain will not be too technical. Wear comfortable hiking shoes, bring a folding stool, binoculars, and a potluck item to share on the trail.

We will meet at 10 am at the Tomales Point trailhead parking lot at the very end of Pierce Point road near the old white barns. Look for people standing around with sketchbooks. This excursion will go longer than our usual meetup to take advantage of this special opportunity. 10am-4pm, potluck lunch at 12:30.

RAINY DAY BACKUP PLAN: If lots of rain is in the forecast, check this site the morning of the event. We will go to the Bear Valley Visitor center in Point Reyes where we can sketch birds and landscapitos from the covered porch or sketch any of the fine collection of taxidermied animals inside. Last time I was there during a rain I saw and journaled a sharp shinned hawk hunting a song bird in the bushes just yards away! The address is

Be prepared for Nature Journaling goosebumps and a good dose of charismatic mammalian megafauna!

$20 suggested donation