Trail Review #4 – Marquam Trail Mini
Time: 30 mins to 1 hour
As with the best of plans, life sometimes happens and throws a stick in your spokes. You’re all getting this post a few days late due to the fact I poured boiling water on my right hand while in the editing phase. Thankfully it only put me a little behind, and with minimal lingering injury. That said, let’s hit the trail!
We’re mixing it up a bit with a trail divided by a fair distance of roads and greenbelts, and I’ll be reviewing Marquam Trail in two parts. The ‘mini’ version will be first, and covers the smaller self-contained stretch to the south of SW Capitol Highway and the ‘full’ section of trail that leads up to Council Crest Park.
The smaller trail is accessible along SW Terwilliger Blvd just off of SW Barbur Blvd near I-5, nestled along the edge of Burlingame and some of its homes. The trail doesn’t seem like much, and is ultimately quite short and rarely out of view of glimpses of the road above, but due to it’s steep nature, it makes for a pleasant, if simple, jaunt out of suburbia, even if only for a few moments. The trail winds back and forth downwards towards a drainage creek and I-5, affording a tree and ivy filled environment that houses large numbers of birds, squirrels, slugs, and bugs.
“But I don’t like bugs!” I hear you cry.
Worry not! These aren’t your average swarm, but the type of critters you should be watching for whenever you hike. Caterpillars, inchworms, and various species of spider can be found along any trail, and Marquam ‘mini’ is no exception due to its large numbers of trees, bushes, and weeds. Hiking is an enjoyable experience, but it is one that takes us into the homes of other creatures, big and small. It’s our duty as guests to be responsible in our enjoyment, packing out what we bring in and leaving no trace or destruction in our wake. Since it’s their home, why not appreciate the ‘homeowners’ too? Ecosystems are complicated webs of interaction, and by observing the smaller species, right down to the different spiders, beetles, and bugs you find, an equally fascinating layer of nature is opened to you. You can bird watch, bug watch, squirrel spot, and flora find all at once, and if you know the interactions of certain species, sometimes you’ll find evidence of animal you never would have known was there otherwise.