Saturday, November 10, 2012

Nov 10: Hiking Club at Topanga SP

After two days of storms, the greater LA basin was cleared of haze, and those who joined us today for a hike to the Topanga Overlook were rewarded with a spectacular view of Santa Monica Bay! Today from this perch 700' above the ocean, we could see Santa Barbara Island, 48 miles out to sea, and snowcapped Mt Baldy 53 miles to the east.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Oct 25-28: Hiking Club at Death Valley NP

In the 2nd narrows of Redwall Canyon
On our four-day trip to DV with the Honda Hiking Club, we hiked in spectacular Redwall Canyon, the Zabriskie Hills, and the Black Mountains. Weather was perfect - highs in the 80's, nights down to 50 degrees, and no wind. Watch a video here.

Group photo

Afternoon light on the hike out

Friday, October 12, 2012

Zion Trip

Afternoon sun from Angels Landing

Looking down from the East Rim, at Angels landing

From Hidden Canyon

More Zion scenery

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Last Shuttle Flight

The Endeavour orbiter was funded and built as the destroyed Challenger orbiter's replacement.  Built in the late 80's / early 90's at Palmdale's Rockwell facility (right next door to our plant), it was the final shuttle to enter service.  I saw it land on the dry lakebed at Edwards AFB at least once, and it was the final shuttle to fly a space mission. Today it is also the last of the orbiters to be ferried to its final home, this one for permanent display at the California Science Center in Los Angeles. On the way, the NASA 747 carrier aircraft took it on a long farewell tour throughout the state, including on a slow, low flyby of the Palmdale Production Facility.  One of our guys took photos, and when he posted the series, I was in some of them.
By the time Endeavour arrived in LA at midday, all work stopped, and including freeway traffic, as people pulled over and got out of their cars to gawk at the spectacle.
That's John and me

A closeup with the NASA F-18 escort

Friday, September 7, 2012

Rae Lakes

On a four-day trip to the Rae Lakes and Sixty Lakes Basin, I clocked off four more miles of the John Muir Trail (current total: 85 miles out of 215 completed).
One of the Rae Lakes at sunset, Sept 1.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Hiking Club on Clouds Rest

Hiking Club was at Mammoth Lakes Aug 16-19, and on Saturday ten of us climbed Clouds Rest, the nearly 10000' high summit behind and much higher than Half Dome. What a view! I've yet to find a better vantage point to take in so much of Yosemite. From here one can look straight down the Yosemite Valley, as well as view all the high Sierra peaks behind. It's a 14-mile R/T hike to Clouds Rest, so you need to plan for most of or all of a day.
If you view the photo in full size mode, you can see the track worn by hikers who for decades have used the cable route on HD's east side. Just off the brow of HD you can see Sentinel Dome, home of the Sentinel Dome webcam (look here, just to the left of Half Dome, during daylight hours, for that view).

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Meysan Basin

The setting sun brightly illuminates the west face of Lone Pine Peak in this panorama shot, July 21 on a trip to climb Mt Irvine.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

John Muir Trail: Kearsarge Lakes to Whitney Portal

July 2 - 8, six days, group of five, 50 miles. (video).  No rain, no mosquitoes, no snow, no troubles, just lots of beautiful Kings Canyon backcountry scenery.  This segment, accessed from the east side over 11,800' Kearsarge Pass, also includes 13,200' Forester Pass (the highest point on the PCT) 13,770' Trail Crest, and the spur trail to the 14,505' Mt Whitney summit.  I've now hiked 76 miles, or about a third of the John Muir Trail.
Day 1:  Bullfrog Lake
Tyndall Creek
Forester Pass
Day 4: Camp at Guitar Lake, on the west side of Mt Whitney
Day 5: On Mt Whitney

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hiking Club on Mt San Jacinto

On the summit of San Jacinto Peak with Hiking Club, June 23. Weather was perfect, not hot, but sunny and very clear. All 12 of our party summitted, this hike was 11 mi R/T from the top of the Palm Springs Tram.  A good time was had by all.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

PCT Workday

After a day spent treading and clearing the PCT, in the Station Fire area of Section D.  An outstanding group of volunteers!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Pull My Finger

Here I am, demonstrating the power of a single finger, and with nine to spare, I shall be a rock-climbing force to be reckoned with.  In a climbing class with friends, Memorial Day Weekend at Joshua Tree.

Friday, May 18, 2012

April 27 / 28 Paddle Trip in Black Canyon, NV

Black Canyon is the segment of the Colorado River from Hoover Dam to Willow Beach (on Lake Mohave).  Just 12 miles, it's a fun paddle trip but by stopping for hikes it can be stretched out to an overnight trip. Black Canyon has hot springs on both sides, and visitors have improvised pools to capture the water in the canyon bottoms. There are desert bighorn sheep (we saw some) and lots of waterfowl. Put-in is underneath the spectacular new concrete arch bridge that bypasses Hoover Dam. After the trip we overnighted in Boulder City NV, a great old town with no gambling, and toured the dam's powerhouse. Here's the video.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Hike to the Top of Yosemite Falls

Here's Paully and me after hiking to the top of Yosemite Falls. What a view! It's the tallest waterfall in North America. See my Quicktime video of points along the hike here.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hiking Club on the Mt Lowe Railway Loop

17 came out for our March 24 hike on the old railway bed of the Mt Lowe Electric Railway. The 12 mile hike takes in several historic sites including this one on Echo Mountain, site of a hotel that burned down in 1900. In the foreground you can see the rails, still in the ground, that millions of people rode on, up until the 1930's.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hiking Club in LA

The February Hiking Club outing was again to downtown LA, to see old Main Street on an LA Conservancy tour. Yes, Los Angeles has a Main Street, and it is getting revitalized with new loft housing these days. Until just a few years ago, it was a Skid Row; now new people are moving into the neighborhood and occupying the rehabbed buildings.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Archaeology Hike in the Sierras

This weekend was accompanying Mike The Desert Rat to our stomping grounds in the south Sierras in the shadow of Lamont Peak. Today Mike was touring a small archaeology group to our previous finds. The archaeologists pointed out to us many things we'd previously missed, such as bedrock mortars, grinding slicks, and more paintings (like the one pictured above, which was under an overhang). Amongst all the lithic scatter, I even picked up an artifact that turned out to be a broken obsidian spear point. One archaeologist explained how we could know that and why. I don't collect artifacts, I consider it unsavory, so after photographing this point it was left where I found it.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

At Will Rogers State Park

On a hike at Will Rogers State Park today, the weather was perfect and the air was crystal clear. Here's a photo looking out over Pacific Palisades, at the afternoon sun shining off the ocean.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Happy New Year

On New Year's Day I hiked with friends in Los Pinetos Canyon (a tributary of Placerita Canyon). Weather was pleasant and very clear. The attached photo was the view across the San Fernando Valley.