Getting on/off shuttle bus; traveling about 30 miles total, approximately 1/2 hour roundtrip. Getting on/off boat; unavoidable steps; declined ramp followed by a short walk to the catamaran; traveling by boat 8 hours; the dock does not have handrails. In Rio Vista, we will walk approximately 6 blocks on level terrain.
In the hotel restaurant, the breakfast buffet offers choices such as eggs, bacon, potatoes, oatmeal, toast, plus juice, milk, coffee, tea, water.
We’ll board our shuttle bus and ride to the Antioch Marina where we will transfer to our classroom on the water. As we journey the California Delta and the Sacramento River, our Captain and a local expert will discuss the ecology and history of the Delta. We will sail under one of the many drawbridges that link the delta together. The Captain will also point out and discuss the levies as we see the effects of subsidence on the delta islands. We will be on the lookout for the many birds, both resident and winter migrants, that depend on the islands and waterways. Some of the species typically observed in the area include the peregrine falcon, blue heron, red-tailed hawk, red-winged blackbird, kestrel, great egret, and more. NOTE: Bring a refillable water bottle.
We’ll dock at Rio Vista and walk to a popular café where we’ll have a plated meal, which includes a pre-selected sandwich, side salad, and bread and butter, with a beverage choice of lemonade, soda, iced tea, water.
We’ll walk across the street to explore the Rio Vista Museum. Originally a blacksmith shop, the building was converted into a museum in 1975. The museum provides a look into Rio Vista's past with exhibits on community history, period dress, and antique farm equipment. Docents will point out the museum's highlights and answer questions. After a short walk back to the dock, we’ll board our boat and continue to explore the waters of the Sacramento River and the California Delta. The captain and local expert will discuss the habitats favored by migratory birds, their habitats, the delta ecosystems, and the industrial usage of the Sacramento River, as we scan the banks for birds and the waters for ducks and the occasional seal and sea lions.
At the hotel, a biology professor will introduce us to a stealthy and beneficial aviator of the delta that most people do not normally see or notice: bats. Bats are the only mammal capable of true and sustained flight. We will learn why bats are an important part of the delta ecosystem and the ecological threats the species faces.