Thursday, May 31, 2012

Labbit Travels: California One +37° 2' 19.19", -122° 13' 38.03"

+37° 2' 19.19", -122° 13' 38.03"
Pipkin and Domo are still making their way north on California One, continuing from their adventures on an isolated beach near Davenport. The first beach they stopped at was full of seagulls and a few surfers. This beach, an important nesting habitat for the Snowy Plover, had something that Pipkin first thought were large birds in flight...

...but were actually kite surfers! This beach was far more open and windy than the first beach they visited, so it makes sense that there were several kite surfers here.

Domo stayed on the beach to check out the kite surfers while Pipkin took a closer look at the local flora. Even though the sign warns people to stay off the vegetation, Pipkin saw several footpaths and carefully picked his way through so he could check out the flowers.

These yellow and pink succulents are known as ice plants, and are commonly found along beaches and highways where they can help prevent soil erosion. Pipkin thinks they're very pretty. He even convinced Domo to stop and take a sniff.

If they wanted to, they could probably hide in the foliage!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

bise bise

Trees wear pretty lights. Clover wears painted lips. The night sky wears a labbit kiss.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Labbit Travels: California One +37° 0' 14.16", -122° 11' 0.62"

+37° 0' 14.16", -122° 11' 0.62"
The first beach along California One that Pipkin and Domo visited was full of seagulls, and the surf held a handful of surfers. The second beach that they stopped to visit was just south of a small town called Davenport.  This beach was completely deserted.

Domo told Pipkin to get out of the above shot because his plump labbit body was hiding something cool: a cave! Of course Domo wanted to head down to the beach, so he gave Pip an encouraging nudge: 

"C'mon Pip, move your butt!"

It's a steep, rocky, scramble just underneath this pipe. Labbits are quite sure footed but their powerful back legs can get out of control on steep descents. Watch your step when you visit!

Down between the cliffs and bluffs it's not so windy, so Domo and Pipkin bathed in the sun.

Domo walked out onto the beach to watch the waves crash onto this mossy outcropping.

And Pipkin discovered that the cave was really a tunnel! At high tide he's pretty sure the water goes straight through here.

Visiting this beach, one must also hike up and around to get a glimpse of the cliffs from up top, just south of the trail. From here you get an alternate view of the beach, the cave, and the crashing waves.

After a brief picnic, Pipkin and Domo continued to head north on California One. Stay tuned for the next blog post!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

Thank you to those who have served, to those who do serve, and the families who support them.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Labbit Travels: California One +36° 57' 58.82", -122° 7' 21.88"

+36° 57' 58.82", -122° 7' 21.88"

Domo left the suburbs of Santa Clara in a huff, upset over his discovery of how humans treat his kind. There's little you can do though, when those who are captive don't think there's anything wrong with the way they're living. So Pipkin and Domo took off for the coast. The famous California One highway would not disappoint.

They quickly learned to follow anyone pulled over in a truck wearing a skintight wetsuit. From the road it doesn't always seem like there's anything going on, and sometimes you can't see the ocean at all. But if you follow the surfers...

...and go for a little walk through the low brush, you'll come across some railroad tracks, and catch a glimpse of the coast. Walk a little further past the tracks and... will find a well worn path down to the coast.

Look Pipkin! Happy birds, wild and free! (Not Angry Birds, trapped in carnie hell.)

Pipkin loved this place, even though it's not that natural for labbits to hang out by the ocean. He couldn't get enough of the sound of waves crashing on the shore. Best of all, except for the few surfers out on the waves, the beach belonged to the birds, and the birds happily shared the beach with Pipkin. He even tried out some local seaweed. Not bad!

Domo dug his feet into the sand and warmed right up. (It's extremely windy on the coast!) He also couldn't contain his excitement over these cliff walls. SO EXTREME! Okay, well, maybe not extreme, but he gets really excited over anything he can climb. He even convinced Pipkin to climb, too. Perhaps the day at the amusement park wasn't such a bad idea, now that Pipkin's getting braver. The views are totally worth the effort. This place is gorgeous.

One last look. Pip and Domo are gonna follow the next group of surfers they see.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wild and Free

After Pipkin's stomach got tossed around on the rides, Domo gave him a little break and they wandered around the park's arcade. This is where they learned just how sick humans can be. Keeping birds captive for carnie sport? No wonder they're angry.

Pipkin would save each and every one. Angry birds make him uneasy. They shouldn't be in captivity but out in the world, wild and free, like the birds he sees on his friend Donnie's birdwatching website. Even Pipkin has experienced the joy of nesting in the treetops...well, okay. Maybe the branches were kinda scratchy on his butt. But it was pretty cozy.

He thought about the chinchilla that he found at - of all places - the aquarium in San Francisco:

That was pretty sad too, but at least he was being well fed, wasn't crowded in, and wasn't being forced into some sick human game.

Uh oh. Domo found something upsetting. Their day at the park might be done.

That pink Domo doesn't seem to think there's anything wrong with their existence. He keeps telling Pipkin, "the Claw! The Claw chooses who will stay, and who will go." It's too much for Domo to bear. He's gonna practice some free will and walk out of this park.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Labbit Travels: California's Great America, Santa Clara, CA

Having explored the Bay Area, (and not seen and done and eaten everything that they wanted to have seen and done and eaten) Pipkin and Domo made their way south to Silicon Valley.  Domo's been breaking Pipkin in to more and more daring behavior since he first sprung Pip free of box-shelf life in August 2010. Pipkin's most daring feat so far has been hopping across the Golden Gate Bridge. Sure, he's been on high mountaintops, waterfalls and even hitched rides on motorcycles, but up on a bridge, where there's potential to fall off into water,or get run over by cyclists and let's not forget breathing in the fumes from the traffic...these are things outside the realm of normal labbit behavior. Give Pipkin a mountaintop and his powerful hind legs will take him up no problem. (Going down is another story. Labbits are rear-wheel drive.) But all that open metal and Pipkin still shudders about it. Domo's proud of Pipkin having confronted his fear, but he feels...

...things can get way more EXTREME. So that's how they found themselves spending a late spring day at California's Great America.

Pipkin started off gently with a swing ride. Verdict? Fun! Relaxing, actually. Spinning around is not so bad. Heights, not so bad, once you're buckled in.

Then they moved on to roller coasters. As EXTREME as Domo can get, he favors a good old fashioned wooden roller coaster over the smooth, G-pulling steel coasters. Something about the sound and vibration of a wood coaster is particularly thrilling. Pipkin's verdict? Also fun. The views from the top were breathtaking. Also breathtaking - the drops, barrel rolls and loops. Still. Doing pretty good...

Finally, The Drop Tower, a roaring 22 story descent in less than 4 seconds. This. Is. EXTREME!!!

After all the spinning and high speed coasters, how bad could this be? But Pipkin wasn't prepared for just how high this ride took you. Apparently 22 stories, with no solid ground around you, is quite thrilling. There's also no way to predict when you've reached the top, which seems like an eternity, or when you get dropped, which was fast. Pipkin's labbit tummy shot northwards to about the tops of his ears, and as you can see, he's looking a little green. Domo might have just broken Pipkin.

Maybe it's time for a little break from the extreme.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Buns on Bikes!

There's a reason why this little green labbit was found eating lots of...protein...when he arrived at the warren in southern Vermont. It's because he's trying to take care of his lean, green, biking physique. His name's Masher McBuns, and he believes Buns (both human and labbit) Belong on Bikes.

Today on his long weekend ride, he came across these two bunnyfish. They'd had a long time of travelling so Masher zipped them into the saddle bag and invited them back to the warren. Looks like we'll be hearing about their tales of adventures, too!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Labbit Travels: Muir Woods, Marin County, CA

Now this is more like it! Pipkin and Domo had spent the early morning at the Golden Gate bridge, and although it was nice to look at, hopping across the bridge exposed to cold winds, cars rushing by and cyclists (who never look out for little labbits underfoot) wasn't a big bunch of carrots to Pipkin. He needed to feel more like a labbit, so the two headed north of the city to visit Muir Woods National Monument

In the tranquility of the forest, one can really take in the surroundings and look up at the giant redwood trees in quiet awe.


Sometimes you just have to lead by example. Calm labbit, calm Domo.

Pipkin was tempted to taste the wood sorrel, which looked like tiny sun parasols, but he decided to leave it to the locals to eat. The chipmunk below really seemed to like it.

Pipkin promised Domo there would be some good climbing, and after an afternoon of scrambling over roots and rocks and getting into giant tree trunk caves, Domo agreed being in the woods could be as much fun as being in the city.

Domo: Hey, let's pretend we're walking to Mordor!
Pipkin: One does not simply walk into Mordor...

Friday, May 18, 2012

Labbit Travels: Golden Gate Bridge

One of these two is excited to walk across the Golden Gate bridge. The other is worried about high winds, traffic, and bicyclists. Can you guess who's feeling what?

Pipkin thinks this is a pretty good view right here. He could also get a better view with these binocular thingies, just like they have at Hogback Mountain. Hey! It's twice the price here! Only 25 cents on the east coast, hrrrrmmm...

It took a little convincing, but Domo managed to convince Pipkin to get out onto the bridge. He told Pipkin to keep looking up, and not over the side into the water. With shaking legs, Pip hopped across the bridge.

He wasn't quite brave enough to climb the suspension towers like Domo. (In all seriousness, you really shouldn't climb the bridge. There's probably a rule against doing such a thing, but common sense dictates that it's not safe.)

After Domo came down, Pipkin said he'd had enough adventure, so the duo crossed the bridge and headed towards Muir Woods. Domo had to take one picture of Pip on the bridge...and that's when some passerby photobombed poor Pip. He HATES it when people do the 'ole labbit ears. He's already got labbit ears! He doesn't think it's funny. (But it is!)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Look Up!

 Pipkin's not a very tall labbit, so when he's out in the world, he often feels very small.
 He needs to look up at a lot of things, like the Golden Gate Bridge...
...or the giant California redwood trees of Muir Woods. There's so much beauty in the world, you can't keep looking at what's just in front of you. Look up, look down, look all around!