Articles by Ron Erskine

About Ron Erskine
Ron Erskine is a local outdoors columnist and avid hiker.

A Coe Park classic

Ask any volunteer at Henry W. Coe State Park who has spent time in the visitor center what most visitors are looking for, and the answer will be the same: “We’d like to go on a short hike, maybe a couple hours, nothing arduous.” Ask those same volunteers for the [...]

South Valley responds to annual summer hiking trek

In December 2012, I wrote this in my “Getting Out” column: “Each new year, we resolve to lose weight, exercise more, or make some other pledge of self-improvement that usually withers and dies before January is gone. But sometimes, if the challenge has enough allure, and [...]

Family Day at Chitactac Adams park set for June 29

Imagine our south Santa Clara Valley before the Gold Rush. It was not unusual to see scores of grizzly bears in a single day. Pronghorn and tule elk regularly browsed beside tule marshes and wetlands. Deer foraged beneath a forest of valley oaks evenly spaced across the valley [...]

Bay Area’s newest preserve now open

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area is a mixed bag. The comings and goings of eight million residents lead to crowding and congestion that can test the limits of patience. But we are blessed to be surrounded by more open space than any metro area in the nation. Time in the [...]

Spring on Mount Diablo

The browning of our hills is underway. Spring is fading, and summer is on the way. If you are not ready to give up cool day hikes among blooming wildflowers, there are places to go where spring lingers. Mount Diablo is one. Mount Diablo is one of the Bay Area’s most [...]

Bald eagle neighbor

We tell ourselves that the world’s scenic wonders and special wildlife are somewhere else—some exotic location far, far away. Certainly, there are exciting things to see in distant places, but does our longing for wonders elsewhere close our eyes to the ones right in [...]

Venture off the trail

There are days when the prospect of another walk on a trail you have trod many times before doesn’t have the allure. It is a lovely trail, but you know it like the back of your hand. So, the hiking shoes stay in the closet, and you stay on the sofa. One way to add a bit of [...]

Elegant Waters

We live in one of the few regions on our planet with a Mediterranean climate—dry summers and wet winters. We can count on the dry summers, but more and more, fickle winters haven’t always delivered their half of the bargain. When the rains do come, the pulse of life returns [...]

One step at a time

Walking. We do it every day without thought. Over the last six summers, more than 400 people from our community have accepted a special challenge and walked to a high mountain summit. For most, it was simply a lovely, but tiring, day out. But for many others, it was a walk [...]

Local backcountry

“I have been meaning to get up there.”“It’s been 10 years since I visited the park. I have to go back soon.”When I talk to people in our community, many who have lived here for decades, I am surprised how often I hear remarks like this about Henry W. Coe State Park. [...]
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