We’re Boulderin’

Juniper Flats to Boyscout Trailhead via Johnnie Lang Canyon (8 miles, +500/-1,500 feet). Winter backpacking is always tough more for the dark than the cold.  We did everything we could last night to stay up until the stars came out, but even so it’s 12 hours of full darkness in the tent before light breaks….

Don’t Go Climbing Waterfalls

Boy Scout Trailhead to Juniper Flats via Smith Water Canyon (16 miles, +2,000/-1,000 feet). Once more, into the breach!  After a crazy cold trip to Joshua Tree last week I agreed to do it again with MixMaster and Sobo Baggins.  This was Sobo’s first overnight trip, so I thought I would pick an easy route….  But…

Surviving the Night

Juniper Flats Trail (2 miles, +300/-300 feet). It was cold yesterday, and then last night around 9pm the wind picked up and blew away all the clouds.  The one time I got out to pee the stars were absolutely spectacular, but it was FREEZING! Back in my tent I had every item of clothing on…

Baby It’s Cold Outside

Juniper Flats Trailhead to Stubbe Springs Loop (12 miles, +1,400/-1,400 feet). ZoZoZoom has never been backpacking before.  She was especially worried about being comfortable sleeping and being attacked by wild animals in the dead of night.  But with her spirit of adventure, she overcame these concerns and hit the road with me for an overnight in…

WBC Desert Hike

Juniper Flats to Quail Mountain and back (12 miles, +1,500/-1,500 feet). BarnFinder, Karpo, and I signed up for a Wilderness Basics Course with the Sierra Club this winter, and it has lots of great information.  Unfortunately, most of it is information we already know—the course is really oriented towards people who have never been backpacking…

Desert Wonderland

Black Rock Campground to Upper Covington Flat (8 miles, +1,200/-600 feet). We got a bit of a late start this morning because of our rude neighbors from last night.  But it was cold, so starting after sunrise for once may not have been the worst outcome. We decided to take the California Hiking and Riding Trail back…

Riding with Rangers

Upper Covington Flat to Black Rock Campground (8 miles, +800/-1,600 feet). The last time I hiked with my friend Jay, we were in the San Gorgonio Wilderness.  On that trip, he said he’d be happy to go again some time, but he wanted something at a lower altitude where it’s a little easier to breathe!…

Boy Oh Boy Scout

Indian Cove Backcountry Board to near Quail Springs Picnic Area and back (20 miles, +1600/-1,600 feet). This was my first overnight trip with Half Cookie.  Yesterday, we drove up to Joshua Tree from San Diego where we had a surprisingly good Indian lunch at a place called Sam’s.  We then cached water near Quail Springs picnic…