10. Little Jimmy Backpacking Trip in Angeles National Forest with Lorenzo
9. Pallett Mountain Backpacking Trip with Etienne
Pallett Mountain is along Pleasant View Ridge which I hiked up to for the first time earlier in the year from Burhart Saddle from the west. I found it to be a great peak with nice places to camp. I hadn’t yet hiked the entire way from third bump on Mt. Williamson to Pallet Mountain from the east. I learned my friend Etienne also wanted complete that segment of Pleasant View Ridge, so we decided to camp on Pallett Mountain which was a great call. The night view from there is outstanding and it’s one of the lesser traveled places in the forest.
6. PCT at Three Points to Winston Peak
I hiked to Winston Peak for the first time earlier in the year and it became one of my favorite peaks. The main reason this peak isn’t as popular as peaks nearby is it can be reached by a 1.2 mile round trip hike from the parking lot at Cloudburst Summit. Who wants to drive all the way up there for such a short hike? On my first trip I extended it by also hiking to Winston Ridge. However, I like this peak so much that I decided to think about how to make it the furthest point on a much longer hike. I had never hiked following the PCT from Three Points to Cloudburst Summit before largely because being so close to Angeles Crest Highway (crossing it four times before starting up the trail leading to Winston Peak) didn’t appear that interesting. This is another example of the map not being the territory. I found this to be a great hike with expansive vistas throughout yielding another great perspective of the forest. This is now one of my favorite hikes which I’ll return to often and look forward to trying one day in the snow.
5. Point Lobos State Reserve With Debbie
This was my third time visiting Point Lobos. Being conveniently located off Highway 1 near Carmel, I’m not sure I’m capable of driving by it in daylight and not stopping in. There are so many ecotones in such a small area and pretty much a guarantee to see some combination of Southern Sea Otters, Harbor Seals, and California Sea Lions.
4. Baden-Powell Snow Hike In Angles National Forest
This was a fantastic day hiking a trail I know well, but this time in snow. Clouds made this one especially interesting. Post: Snow Hiking In LA: Vincent Gap to Mt. Baden-Powell
3. Founder’s Grove and Mahan Loop, Humboldt Redwoods State Park With Debbie
This is a short hike off Avenue Of The Giants (a detour off Highway 101 I doubt I will ever miss again driving that stretch of highway in daylight). The only place I’ve experienced that I can compare it to is Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park and I’m torn between which one I prefer. I have a modest preference for giant sequoia trees and a modest preference for the quality of light in this redwood forest.
2. Methuselah Walk, Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest With My Daughter
This hike was part of a trip where my daughter and I camped at Grandview Campground. Knowing that many of the trees were thousands of years old (one over 5,000 years old) had me thinking of timelessness as I walked through the dramatic variety in texture this forest yields. Post: Camping And Walking Along The Ancients.
1. Emerald Ridge Trail in Redwood National Forest
This was my first hike after an extended hiatus due to injury. It was a unique experience as I needed to get the day’s combination to unlock a gate to drive to the trailhead. This loop trail included hiking down Emerald Ridge, along Redwood Creek, through Tall Trees Groove, and up the Tall Trees Trail. Along the way I crossed several ecotones which made this hike exceptionally diverse for a short hike. Post: Combination Lock Access To Towering Redwoods.