Category: Day hiking

Car camping the Mono Lake region

Lindsey and I headed to the rain shadow for MLK weekend. It’s mid-winter, but it’s a drought and temperatures are mild. We had a great weekend.

With ice and snow at elevation, and curiosity trumping fitness goals, we did more exploring than exercising. The list of places we visited is long:

  • Travertine hot spring: where we soaked and camped the first night
  • Lundy Canyon: where we drove over snow and then walked up canyon just a bit
  • South Tufa: where we lunched and said hi to the lake
  • June Lake area: where we walked up from Silver Lake, hit ice again and played a riddle
  • Mammoth: where we went to the store
  • the green church: where we went to Hilltop hot spring
  • Mono Lake: where we returned to disperse camp
  • Pickle Meadow: near the Mountain Warfare Training Center, where we walked, crossed the river and climbed a basalt monolith

It was a really rejuvenating and grounding weekend marked by good company, asking lots of questions and comfortable nights camping.

I hardly took pictures but I did take this one. Mono Lake, Calif.

I hardly took pictures but I did take this one. Mono Lake, Calif.

Trip planning for 2015

Hiking Stebbins Cold Canyon loop at Lake Berryessa

We loaded up the car and headed to Berryessa for an afternoon hike. Fun company, nice light and just the right amount of casual effort make it one of our best local hikes.

The day was marked by emergency responders descending on the canyon as we were heading out. Two helicopters, a plane and two volunteer firefighters from Vacaville were the first wave. It was hard to really know what was going on – what they told us was that they thought that a climber had fallen. I helped in a minor way by finding and directing them to a game trail that they could follow. It’s not a crag that I know to be on climber’s lists. After quite a bit of searching, the helicopter found one person and lifted them out before returning to the accident site. We left before seeing full resolution. It all seemed fast paced – a worrisome sign. Back towards the trailhead, probably a dozen fire trucks were starting their response.

Lake Berryessa in the background.

Lake Berryessa in the background.

Day hiking to the Peter Grubb Hut, Pacific Crest Trail

This is one trashed PCT emblem. They're no longer made this way. I think it's neat.

This is one trashed PCT emblem. They’re no longer made this way. I think it’s neat.

We closed down the office, and invited some of our volunteers and all of the organizations in our building for a day hike north from I-80. I’m so glad that we did.

Day hiking and tenkara fishing Caples Creek

Clouds came in and thunderstorms were forecast so we decided to hike in the trees. Alpine lakes would have been preferred but Caples Creek, nature, exercise and good company made for a nice Sunday.

It was my first attempt at tenkara fishing. I had and have not a clue about what I’m doing. I’ve never been a fisherman and I’m taking the “just figure it out” approach. Lisa watched me cast just long enough to thoroughly tangle my level line and lose a fly before I retreated to the beach and a pb&j.

My fishing setup weighs about half a pound. With that penalty, why not? My desire is mostly to hold fish in my hands and then put them back. Seems like a fun way to connect with nature.

My fishing setup weighs about half a pound. With that penalty, why not? My desire is mostly to hold fish in my hands and then put them back. Seems like a fun way to connect with nature.