Rockhouse Canyon

Cottonwood Springs to Rockhouse Canyon Trailhead (8 miles, +300/-2,200 feet). It was colder last night than I expected, though we got absolutely no wind so we were both comfortable in our tents.  We awoke to a beautiful conjunction of Venus and Jupiter. In an extremely unusual move for both of us, we decided to wait…

Buck Ridge and Alder Canyon

Rockhouse Canyon Trailhead to Cottonwood Springs (12 miles, +3,700/-1,800 feet). It was time for another winter trip with MixMaster, and the cold temperatures usually mean we stay close here in SoCal.  This time we decided to head to Anza-Borrego and explore the region below Toro Peak. We were originally going to head out yesterday, but…

Kwaaymii Point Stroll

Kwaaymi Point to PCT Halfmile 55.8 and back (5 miles, +1,000/-1.000 feet). Half Cookie and I heard they had snow up at Mount Laguna on Christmas Day, and I really wanted to try out my new MSR Lightning Ascent snowshoes.  So we decided to drive up for a day hike. But when we got there…

Tehachapi Pass

Gamble Spring Canyon (PCT Halfmile 545.2) to Tehachapi Pass (mile 566.5) (21.3 miles, +3,400/-4,200 feet). After my monster day yesterday I thought today would be easy. Just 21 miles to Tehachapi Pass?  Ha! I was so wrong. As it turns out, there was a lot more snow than I was expecting.  I thought maybe there…

LA Aqueduct!

Hikertown (PCT Halfmile 517.6) to Gamble Spring Canyon (mile 545.2) (27.6 miles, +3,200/-1,600 feet). Time for more PCT!  I originally thought I could sneak in a 4 day trip from Tehachapi Pass to Walker Pass, but a big storm just came through and dumped snow all the way down to 4,000 feet. 80+ miles in…

1:45

PCT Halfmile 314.3 to mile 304.3 and back (20 miles, +3,200/-3,200 feet). Just like me, Barnfinder is section hiking the PCT.  But his goal is not just to cover every mile.  He wants to do each mile both north and south!  So I offered to join him as he works on this doubly-challenging goal. We…

Buena Vista Crest

Lower Merced Lake to Buena Vista Crest to Mono Meadows Trailhead (18 miles, +3,100/-4,600 feet). I was very excited to get up and get started this morning.  Set aside the fact that it was 25 degrees and our water had frozen and I was happy to be moving.  What I was really looking forward to…

Lower Merced Pass Lake

Mono Meadows Trail to Lower Merced Pass Lake (13 miles, +3,000/-1,400 feet). It’s been quite a while since Orion and I did a hike together, so I was really looking forward to our trip to Yosemite. Although the forecast called for lows in the 20s, the weather was bizarrely still quite seasonal, with no snow…

Chilnualna Falls Trail

UC Yosemite Field Station to View of Wawona Dome on the Chilnualna Falls Trail (5 miles, +1,500/-1,500 feet). The University of California has some sweet facilities for hosting conferences, including some at Yosemite, so I reserved one of them in late October for our annual “Human Nature Group Masters” conference of colleagues and UCSD alumni….

Just One More Up

Upper Velma Lake to Inspiration Point (5 miles, +800/-2,000 feet) Sometimes I read the topo map wrong. Today was one of those days. I assured ZoZo that we had “just one more up” of a few hundred feet, and then it was all downhill to finish up our three day trip in the Desolation Wilderness….

Dicks Pass

Susie Lake to Upper Velma Lake (10 miles, +2,000/-1,900 feet) Man oh man the moon was bright last night.  I didn’t bring my umbrella on this trip because I didn’t expect rain or long hot fast climbs, but I sure wish I had brought it for its moon shade. Since we didn’t have to drive…

Lake Aloha

Echo Lakes Trailhead to Susie Lake (10 miles, +1,700/-1,400 feet) It’s time for another birthday trip with ZoZoZoom!  At 25 miles over three days and two nights, it will be her longest backpacking trip ever.  Not bad for a septuagenerian! But it is also personally exciting for me, too.  I’ve always wanted to see the…