Animals I Have Met: Muir Woods Chipmunk
I am going to cut myself some slack on the quality of this photograph. Though it is hard to see the chipmunk, that is in part because half the point of being a chipmunk is avoiding being obvious.
L. strongly recommended I post this today.
We caught her/him just as we were leaving the trail, in sight of the parking lot; he was hopeful for crumbs, I think. There are several signs posted by the NPS forbidding the feeding of the chipmunks, varying in intensity, cleverness, and passive-aggressiveness.
There are also signs encouraging silence, especially through Cathedral Grove. It’s a kind of ravine that, apart from occasional chatter from tweens, seems actually quite silent. One of the signs at the visitor center tells parents to tell their kids to be quiet. Then it addresses them directly. “Children, why are we quiet in nature?” An ad hoc catechesis.
It is nice, L. observed, to think there are places in the world you should just shut up for a little bit.
Another sign further down explains the silence is a way to preserve the wildness of the ravine: its hunters, its remaking, everyone’s way home and friends.