Next week we are hiking Mt. Whitney. Before we do that though, we wanted to help prepare ourselves for the next step. We originally wanted to climb San Gregornio, which is the tallest mountain in Southern California, but we were late on getting a permit. A great alternative for us was to camp just below Anderson Peak. The elevation gain is comparable to that of our first day of hiking on Whitney. The second day on Whitney will be a bit of a grueler, so we paired up our second day of this trip with a 13 – 14 mile hike passing San Bernadino Peak and a few other noteworthy places along the way.
We found a nice campsite at Trail Fork camp. We put our tent close to the edge of the hill where fewer trees could obstruct the view. From here we’re looking down into the valley and can see Big Bear Lake in the distance. We can also see the desert from here, so the view is pretty killer.
Tomorrow we are going to try to head further down the trail to hit a couple of the 10k + peaks in the San Gregornio Forest, then head back down to John’s Meadow to complete the loop. Callie tells me that the flowers are beginning to bloom at John’s Meadow (reported by a blogger last week), so hopefully we’ll get to spend a little time there too.
Callie has been struggling with finding the right pair of boots lately. She bought some Vasques which seemed good at first, but the size was off. Then after exchanging them for a different size, they were too narrow. She then took those back for some Keens, which she is currently using, but blisters are now on the attack. It pains me to see her walking to gingerly, knowing that it’s effecting her experience in a negative way.
Thankfully, now that we’re back at camp it’s warm enough to simply wear flip flops, kick back and enjoy the view. The sunset was incredible. I guess it pays to be on one of the biggest peaks around. Unobstructed views! As the sun was setting, a storm was rolling in, so in some of the pictures we took, you can see the clear sky to the West and how it turns gloomy to the right side of the pictures.
Today we actually skipped hiking Anderson Peak. There’s no real trail to the top, and as we were trying to save Callie from blisters, we skirted the top and headed further down the trail to San Bernadino Peak. More great views!
After descending San Bernadino Peak, there’s an interesting spot called Washington Monument where much of the surveying of Southern California was conducted. I’d end up butchering the story, so give these a read:
Overall, the hike was about 20 miles. Bedtime is coming early tonight, but I’m confident in our Whitney trip and that was the overall goal with this trip.