Friday, March 04, 2011

Hikes I could do this year

The Man plans to return to the PCT where he left off last year. Last year he hiked from the Mexican border to Apache Peak where he slipped on the snow, slid 100 feet down the mountain and sprained his ankle. He was rescued by helicopter and it took about 8 weeks to heal his ankle. He plans to return and hike for at least 3 weeks. Apparently he'd like to go solo. This is fine. I'd like him to know what the PCT is like solo. But I can't help but feel jealous.

So it occurred to me that I could plan a bunch of solo weekend trips. I thought perhaps if I listed them all out, I could do a better job picking the ones I would like to actually do. Perhaps I could set a goal to hike as many of these as I can this year.

So here's a list:
  • Tunnel Trail to Matias Potrero Camp. ~7 miles from Tunnel Trail Head to Matias Potrero. Could return, catch a ride from Paradise Road or hike on to make a 3-sided rectangle using Gibraltar Trail and Cold Spring Trail. Or a two-night trip and hike all the way home.
  • Fish Creek Camp. 3 miles from trailhead. Quickie overnighter. Could hike on up the trail and stealth camp.
  • Manzana Narrows. 7 miles from trailhead. I hate Manzana Narrows. Too cold.
  • Hole in the wall. ~9 miles from trailhead. Awesome secret place. Pretty long hike. Would need long light to do it on a Friday night.
  • Willow Spring Trail. I think there is an old camp up there. It might no longer have room to camp. It's about 5 miles.
  • 19 Oaks. ~2 miles from trailhead. Maybe too short. Could hike on and see where I end up. Maybe there's somewhere to camp on the dirt road further along. Or maybe hike in from Aliso Trail and make it much longer.
  • Little Pine Spring. ~9 miles from trailhead. Excellent strenuous hike. Far enough into the backcountry to feel like Wilderness.
  • Forbush. ~2 miles from trailhead. Quickie.
  • Cottam/Blue Canyon/Upper Blue Canyon. Further up the trail from Forbush. Could make a loop out of it using Romero Trail and parts of the 9-Trails to get back to Cold Spring or even walk home for a really long hike.
  • Mono/Little Caliente. ~8+ miles from trailhead. Car access part of the year so I'd have to do this when the road is closed. Otherwise the people there would be extraordinarily annoying.
  • Hell's Half Acre. Horrible road walk but interesting spot on Wilderness boundary.
  • Potrero Camp. ~2 miles from trailhead. Quickie hike but a longish drive.
  • Coldwater Camp. ~4 miles from trailhead. Further along the trail from Potrero.
  • Horseshoe Camp. ~5 or 6 miles. Could end up with annoying teenagers/college kids, but could hike on further toward Schoolhouse.
  • Meadow near Negis Cave or therabouts. Stealth camp in secret spot. Could be really awesome.
There are awesome places in the Matillija and Sespe Wilderness, too. For example:
  • Murietta Camp. ~4 miles from trailhead? Kind of dark and gloomy but might be nice in summer.
  • Camps all along Matillija Trail
  • Chorro Grande. Reminded me of the PCT. Might have snow right now. Wasn't too far. Maybe 5 miles?
  • Potrero John Trail. I think there was a camp about 2 miles in.
  • Dry Lakes Botanical area. Stealth camp. Could do on a Friday night if I got an early start.
  • Willits Hot Spring. ~10 miles from trailhead. Pretty popular because of the hot spring. Camps along the way, though. Not a good one for a Friday night.
  • Buck Creek Trail. I have to complete my 2009 hike and go see the trail I missed because I got lost. Would have to drive in on a Friday, stay a bit beyond the closed-for-hanta-virus car camp, and start hiking in on Saturday.
Wow! That's a long list. I could stay really busy doing all these on weekends.


  1. Meadow near Negis Cave? This sounds inviting. Is this location too secret to post? Nice list.

  2. It's probably not a good idea to talk about any places near the Negis cave, but there is that nice meadow right there on Potrero Trail just before the cave. I think I could sleep in the meadow. At certain times of the year, there's even a little creek.

    I don't make a fire when I camp so "dispersal camping" is doable just about anywhere I can lay my head for the night.