The Gene Marshall – Piedra Blanca National Recreation Trail, Johnston Ridge and the Sespe River Trail
It’s been about 6 years since we lived near the southern Los Padres National Forest. We were overdue for a vacation, so we decided to take a few days off work and pay a visit to one of our favorite hiking destinations: the Sespe Wilderness. The trail was pretty rough – not sure this was the most relaxing vacation – but it was good to get out. Continue reading “Sespe Wilderness Loop”
Murietta Falls. Other hiking blogs have referred to it as a “regional gem.” That might be true, but it’s certainly no Yosemite Falls. While the waterfall itself might leave a little to be desired, the hike is appealing: it’s incredibly steep (a good challenge!) and it provides nice views of the East Bay. Continue reading “Murietta Falls”
The hike to the Sierra Buttes Fire Lookout is about 5 miles (out and back) with a climb of 1500 feet (or more if you start at a different trailhead). It’s a pretty cool destination! We went with a group of 14 people and even the non-hikers seemed to enjoy the lookout! The top (at 8587-ft) provides views down to Upper/Lower Sardine Lakes, the surrounding Sierra Buttes and many miles of Tahoe National Forest. Continue reading “Sierra Buttes Fire Lookout”
Climbing to the top of Round Top is an interesting hike – it starts of very mellow/easy and gets progressively more difficult as you get closer to the summit. The final 100′ or so are considered an easy Class 3. This hike is located in the Carson Pass Management Area (part of the Mokelumne Wilderness), just south of Highway 88 near Kirkwood Mountain Resort. The beginning of the hike is crowded – many people simply hike up to Winnemucca Lake (a worthy destination in itself) – but far fewer people reach the summit of Round Top. When hiked as a loop, this trip is approximately 6.5 miles with 2000 ft of elevation gain. There are many trail signs; if one knows which general direction to head in, it’s nearly impossible to get lost.
Continue reading “Round Top and Winnemucca Lake”
If you wanted to, you could drive almost to the top of Mt. Tamalpias. But if you want to really climb Mt. Tam, then start from the ocean. This hike leaves from Stinson Beach and climbs the Steep Ravine trail up to East Peak, then loops back on the north side. The grand total is over 16 miles, and a few thousand feet of elevation gain.
Basics: This hike climbs from Stinson Beach to the East Peak of Mt Tamalpais. It’s a long one – we hiked it as a loop totaling over 16 miles round trip. We reached the top via the Steep Ravine Trail, Matt Davis Trail and Old Railroad Grade road. We returned on the International Trail, Northside Trail, Bay Area Ridge Trail and Matt Davis Trail (among others). Mt Tam has an amazingly large and well developed network of trails and roads. There are many options. Everything is well-signed, but unless you know where you are going, bring a map! Continue reading “Mt Tamalpais via the Steep Ravine Trail”