Rancho, again

by

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Jacky and I went to Rancho a couple days ago, but I thought it would be a good place to go for a killer day. And it was. I hiked the perimeter trails; usually I do the route clockwise, but I reversed the order today and added a few frills, including the side trip into Hidden Villa. I decided to omit the built-up part of the area, bypassed it by taking Grapevine trail, which I had not previously hiked. It turned out to be a steep descent to Adobe creek (so this is where the Palo Alto Adobe creek comes from!), then the steep ascent back to Black Mountain trail.

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The rock field at the top of Black Mountain road is a popular destination. Probably met twenty hikers coming or going during the time I was on this particular stretch of trail.

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Moffett field down there, soon to be home to an expansion of the Google campus, which is presently off to the left of the picture.

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And seriously bad news for someone, probably in Sunnyvale. Half an hour later, the black smoke had settled into a horizontal cloud, and there was a plume of white coming up from the ground, indicating condensed steam from the fire-fighters’ attack. Half an hour later still, I got a slight whiff of the smoke myself.

Nice day, chilly. A round dozen deer early in the day, another ten mid-afternoon. The mountain lion seen here a week ago should be texting all his buddies that the pickins are pretty good here!

Only 19 miles, but 4100 vertical feet, where 4k feet of climb qualifies it as a killer hike.

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