Once we get to the saddle, we will be cutting a ramp/uphill path into the side of a really steep slope, but I don't anticipate we will be having to do many steps. Right now it's almost one continuous staircase. And those steps kill my knees. But we figured switchbacks would destroy too much habitat. These mountains may look bare, but they're covered with vegetation. They just won't green up until summer monsoons arrive.
In the future, I'll post photos of what that steep slope really looks like up close. You may recall a photo I posted not too long ago of me perched up near the oaks. It's really impenetrable and we don't want to do hardly any "improvements" to it for fear of damaging the fragile ecosystem there.
I was delighted to discover a blooming Indian Paintbrush (Castilleja rigida) yesterday along my road. Since the horrible drought of 2011 they're quite scarce here.
And Barry Zimmer was kind enough to allow me to post the toad he photographed at CMO a few days ago. It's a W. Narrow-mouthed Toad.