FISH CANYON NARROWS, SAN GABRIEL MTS JULY 2009 PAGE ONE
Photographs by Michael Charters




Having made several trips to the Liebre Mts area this past spring, I wanted to try to get into a different part of it, so I decided on Fish Canyon. Coincidentally, the latest issue of Los Angeles magazine had a cover article on 10 great hikes and lo and behold one of them was Fish Canyon Narrows. So today I drove up the Grapevine past Castaic and turned onto Templin Highway. I drove to where it ends at a locked gate. In years past you could drive 2-1/2 more miles to Cienaga Campground and start your hike from there, but now that gate adds 5 round-trip miles to any excursion you plan. Fortunately, I had been granted the use of a key to that gate, so I continued on. The road, which is mostly dirt but paved in places, is seriously undermined and broken in places by the flow of water in the Lower Narrows about 1/2 mile from the campground, so I couldn't proceed safely beyond that point, but still it saved me 4 miles of walking on a hot, dusty road. Given that this is July and the Fish Canyon Narrows are not a higher-elevation location, I didn't have high expectations for there to be a great deal of flora in bloom, but I was able nevertheless to find some nice and interesting species. There is still water flowing through the Narrows, but earlier in the year or in a year with more rainfall there would probably be much more blooming. An upside-down V next to the common name indicates a taxon that was new to me when I photographed it on this field trip, and an asterisk indicates a non-native species.


   
Dunn's lobelia
Lobelia dunnii var. serata
Campanulaceae
 
Canchalagua
Zeltnera venusta (= Centaurium
venustum
)
Gentianaceae
 
Sneezeweed
Helenium puberulum
Asteraceae


 
Lesser indian paintbrush
Castilleja minor ssp. spiralis
Scrophulariaceae
 
Creek monkeyflower
Mimulus guttatus
Phrymaceae


   
Round-leaved boykinia
Boykinia rotundifolia
Saxifragaceae


 
 
Durango root
Datisca glomerata
Datiscaceae

White sweetclover *
Melilotus albus
Fabaceae
 


 
 
Western poison oak
Toxicodendron diversilobum
Anacardiaceae
 
 
Leafy daisy
Erigeron foliosus var. foliosus
Asteraceae
Salt cedar *
Tamarix ramosissima
Tamaricaceae
California loosestrife
Lythrum californicum
Lythraceae
Southern cattail
Typha domingensis
Typhaceae


 
Scarlet monkeyflower
Mimulus cardinalis
Phrymaceae


       
   
California brickellbush
Brickellia californica
Asteraceae
   
    Nevin's brickellbush
Brickellia nevinii
Asteraceae


 
 
 
California fuchsia
Epilobium canum ssp. latifolium
Onagraceae



   
Chalk dudleya
Dudleya pulverulenta
Crassulaceae
 
White alder
Alnus rhombifolia
Betulaceae