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Archive for the ‘Hiking’ Category

Coyote Gulch

Sunday, August 22nd, 2010

It’s been a busy summer, and I’ve finally found the time to update the blog. Over Memorial Day Weekend this year, a number of friends made the trek to Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument for one purpose: to celebrate Greg’s Bachelor Party by backpacking 22 miles through Coyote Gulch over 3 days.

Coyote Gulch is a very remote, semi-narrow canyon – just to get to the trailhead involved 2 hours of off-roading with the dune buggies. The first day involved hiking across the dry slick rock to the canyon where we descended through a very narrow “Crack-in-the-Wall.” The views from this point were especially majestic. After everyone made it through the crack, we descended into the canyon and began our hike up Coyote Gulch.

Over the next two days, we followed a very shallow creek up the canyon, stopping often to enjoy the views, take photos, and contemplate how we were going to navigate the next obstacle. As we continued to march towards the exit, the walls of the canyon grew shallower and we eventually entered a mosquito-filled marsh / cow pasture. Fortunately that part was short, and we were back to the car before we knew it. Next stop: Vegas!

Catalina

Friday, January 29th, 2010

Back in November, Eli, Dave, and I went to Catalina for a weekend to camp at Two Harbors, hike the Trans-Catalina trail, and camp at Parson’s Landing.  I took a similar trip to Parson’s during the summer of 2007, but this was my first trip to Catalina in the fall, and I was surprised to find what seemed like a nearly deserted island. We attributed it to the time change. 😕

So on a nearly deserted island there isn’t too much else to do besides sit back, relax, read books, and play some horseshoes, and that’s how we occupied our time in Two Harbors and at Parson’s. The 5 mile hike on the Trans-Catalina gave us an intro to the majestic views that could be had on a clear day, but the fog and clouds we encountered made it a unique and windy experience.

Mt. Whitney

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

Mt. Whitney is the highest mountain the contiguous United States, with an elevation of 14,496 ft. Most hikes to Whitney start at the Whitney Portal, which results in a roundtrip hike of about 22 miles with an elevation gain of over 6,100 ft. It’s extremely popular during the summer months, and because of that Inyo National Forest has implemented the Whitney Lottery to decide who gets a permit and when.

Back in June 2007, Paul, Jimmy, Marc, and I hiked Mt. Whitney for the first time. Just for kicks, I entered the lottery once again this year. Luckily, my ’09 permit application was chosen, and even more luckily, the permit was awarded for the first choice of dates (a weekend in early August). Ben, Andrew, and Jimmy joined the adventure this time, and our three day, two night hike took us through some very picturesque mountain scenery.

Although the Whitney Portal is good, Jimmy and I agreed that now after having done the hike twice, any future trips to Mt. Whitney will have to be on a trail less trodden. Alternatively, there are many other 14,000+ ft. peaks that see many less visitors. The options are wide open for next summer…

Approaching Trailside Meadow along the Whitney Portal Trail.Andrew joins the adventure.  (And yes, there will be WAG bag jokes.)Jimmy consulting near Consultation Lake.A 12-minute time lapse from Trail Camp.Ben deftly navigating the snow along the trail.Jimmy, Andrew, and Ben nearing the summit.A 14,496 ft. album cover.

Yosemite National Park

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

At the end of July and a week after the Horsemanship trip, John and Greg traveled to California to join Jimmy and me in an epic backpacking hike across Yosemite National Park: 4 days, 3 nights, and 30 miles from Tuolumne Meadows to Yosemite Valley via the Vogelsang Pass. The views and experiences were amazing, and the photos below are only the beginning of what was another great summer adventure.

Fletcher Peak.Jimmy, John, and Greg at the trailhead.The album cover.  Greg, Jimmy, John, and myself silhouetting the Vogelsang High Sierra Camp.Resting at Vogelsang Pass.The view from near Vogelsang Pass.Jimmy in front of a waterfall on the hike to Merced Lake.Merced Lake.Jimmy, myself, John, and Greg at Nevada Falls.Vernal Falls via the Mist Trail.

Joshua Tree National Park

Saturday, May 16th, 2009

Last weekend was a fine weekend for camping and hiking at Joshua Tree, and fortunately John, Rachel, and Jess flew out from the midwest for just that. Together, the midwesterners and the Angelenos (Jimmy, Hang, Frank, and myself) braved 100°F heat and a great variety of desert wildlife to hike to the Lost Palms Oasis, camp at Indian Cove, and hike to the top of Ryan Mountain. It was a great time and a welcome diversion from the city – not to mention the beginning of what promises to be an exciting summer of adventures!

Rachel, John, Jess, Hang, and Frank hiking to the Lost Palms Oasis.Joshua Tree's Cholla Cactus Garden.Setting up camp at Indian Cove.John, Rachel, me, and Jess atop Ryan Mountain with a Joshua Tree.(There are also black widows atop Ryan Mountain.)Shade is hard to come by in Yucca Valley.What trip to Joshua Tree would be complete without seeing the Cabazon Dinosaurs, featured in Pee Wee's Big Adventure?