Rose peak


25 April 2009

A killer hike seemed like the right thing for today, since next weekend I’ll be at the tender mercies of Air France. The forecast was for cool but sunny, a good opportunity to go to Rose peak. I was already on my way when I realized that I had forgotten to take along a heavy pair of hiking socks. Moomph! Well, I’m not going back for anything less than risk of a house fire.

Hiking boots are the right thing for a long hike in the hills, but I wasn’t sure about only one pair of socks, so I stowed trail shoes in my backpack, just in case. As it turned out, the boots were fine except on the downhills, which bruised my heels. At about 17 miles, I changed to the trail shoes. Good idea; they had better padding in the heel, and just the change was a relief. I will still have pretty sore feet for a day or two.

Pretty country. The grass is already beginning to fade toward gold, even as the wildflowers are at the peak of their season and some of the late trees (oak, sycamore) are only just starting to leaf out. Doris tells me my little friend  is a horned lark, an early bird.

Wildlife: a gaggle of wild turkeys near the park entrance. One bunny. Lots of crane flies, a swallowtail. One frog in a pond, no sign of tadpoles as yet.

I frequently see no one all day on this route, but the trail was quite busy today, and not just the half mile from the parking lot crowd. Many of them were out near Rose peak itself. I like having the world to myself, but it’s good that people know about some of these great places and use them.

19.5 miles total, 4920 vertical feet

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