Saturday, October 30, 2010

Blue Sky Ecological Reserve (#39)

October 26, 2010 - About three months ago, when my son and I hiked Poway Lake (#29), we met Park Ranger Annie. It was she who suggested that we try hiking the nearby Blue Sky Ecological Reserve sometime.

So, per her recommendation, here we are (just Wilson and I this time).

The trail was great. Lots of shade from the Coast Live Oaks.

We branched off through the Oak Grove and Creekside Trail.

The Oak grove was very tranquil except by one of the trees that was swarming with hyperactive bees.

The Creekside Trail was narrow and lush with riparian growth.

Something about walking along a shady trail...   awesome!

Long time since I've seen cattails like these. Pretty cool.

The Witch Creek Fires of October 2007 that burned 198,000 acres and 1040 homes visited this area along the way.

We could have turned right onto this trail and hiked to the Lake Poway Trail but  Wilson seem determined to keep moving forward.

Then we ran into this opportunity. Just a mere 1.2 miles to reach Lake Ramona.

How could we pass that up?

Speaking of up...

...that's what we began to do.

We went "up."

And up, and up.

We paused to look back at the nice view of Lake Poway and its dam.

Wilson begged me to stop and rest. Even though we were almost to the top I obliged as he seemed quite winded.

When we finally made it we were rewarded with our lonely view (no other souls in site) of this remote body of water, Lake Ramona.

The trail straight ahead became private property.

We could have walked along this paved portion that crossed the dam...

...but we were satisfied to simply take in another view of the lake...

 well as the view looking back from where we came.

And back down we went. Wilson was quick to note how the trail down worked a much different set of muscles.

Another AWESOME hike!!


Crestridge Ecological Reserve (#38)

October 13, 2010 -  Today I went for a two mile out and back hike in the area known as the Crestridge Ecological Reserve, 2600 acres of open space surrounding the community of Crest which lies between El Cajon and Alpine to the south of Highway 8.

Crest has been hard hit by fires twice - once during the Laguna Fire in 1970 and again more recently in the Cedar Fire of 2003. Sadly, some homeowners in this area had to rebuild twice. I could see why they would choose to rebuild, though, because Crest is really a groovy little rural community.

This particular trail takes you up to a "peaklet."  The incline gain was mild (not much of a heart-pumper) and we were rewarded with some nice views from the top.

The only bummer was that to the west where we should have had a spectacular ocean vista, what we spied was a foggy-smoggy marine layer.

The nearby low clouds and mist had a real cool effect on the surrounding hills though.

Why don't you just go ahead and check out the rest of the photos without me blabbing on.

Another Great Hike!


View of Lake Jennings

Foggy-smoggy "Would-be" Ocean View

Misty Mountains

Wilson on the Return Trip