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Thursday, June 23, 2016


It was a little bit hairy for a while. I left with a flashlight at 6 AM and made it to one of the landings by daylight. Don't remember which, but I stashed my flashlight and coming back down was so worried about making it down that I forgot to retrieve the flashlight. I wasted valuable time and energy trying to get to the Mexican Blue Oak tree and also working on a wrong Aoudad trail. (The area is crisscrossed with them and I changed my mind on which one to follow.) At 9:30  I forced myself to quit and head down because I wasn't feeling so good. Slightly light-headed and nauseous. Even though it wasn't that hot (85°), I was covered with sweat. I'm sure I can finish the trail next time though. Here is the Aoudad trail that I was working on when I made myself quit.

You can see it's not very far from the saddle, and it's just barely roughed in. Needs lots more work. I can't stay out 4 hours again like I did today. It seems a shame to climb all that way up and only work an hour or so, but that's just how it's going to have to be. I think with two hours I can get it pretty much done. There's one section right after the "corner" that I didn't do anything to yet. Here's the corner. Between the corner and the sheer dropoff is the only place to cross the ridge. I literally turn the corner and keep angling up toward the saddle. Otherwise, I'd have to go downhill and then back up again.

It was a horrible climb getting to the tree but worth it to see the tiny acorns and woodpecker hole. Very likely used by an owl.

Getting down from the tree was hairy too. Its inaccessibility might be the only reason it has survived. Here I am hanging and plotting how to get down. I pretty much just slid down.

I saw these pretty flowers near the corner. Don't know what they are.


  1. OK kiddo. You astound me. I am only 70 and I'd be taking to my bed after working in the heat. But I am sure you have many people saying, geez, take care of yourself. You have accomplished a great deal, not to mention to your water hauling years. Hope you are taking some time to enjoy and relax.

  2. So impressed with your tenacity. And tickled to finally see the oak tree. Take care.

  3. Thanks. It was so worth the effort. I'm plotting my next climb. Sunday is when I plan to do it.