Monday, May 10, 2010

Hike 56: Turnbull Canyon & Vicinity

Hiked Monday, May 10. Approximately 7 miles. This hike was in the land controlled by the Puente Hills Landfill Native Habitat Preservation Authority. The hike started at the Lower Turnbull Canyon Drive access point. For me, this meant taking Rosemead Blvd south to Beverly Blvd, then Beverly east. Somewhere in Whittier, Beverly turns into Turnbull Canyon Drive. The parking area for the Turnbull Canyon Trail is just before after you pass the last of the "regular" houses of Whittier and before you start the narrow, winding part of Turnbull Canyon Drive.

Detailed walking summary: I took the Turnbull Canyon Trail Northeast for .7 miles (all mileages are from the Puente Hills Landfill Native Habitat Preservation Authority maps). It's a dirt road that parallels a usually-dry creekbed. At the .7 mile point, the Turnbull Canyon Trail makes a sharp right turn, to the east. However, the main dirt road continues to the northeast as the Sumac Trail. Zero point six miles later, the Sumac Trail deadends at the Rattlesnake Ridge Trail (which I hiked a few weeks ago). After .2 miles, the Peppergrass Trail breaks off to the left. I took this trail down to the trailhead (near the top of Greenleaf Blvd, a little north of Whittier College, then returned via the Mariposa and Peppergrass Trails (1.25 miles each way).

On my return trip, I continued on the Rattlesnake Ridge Trail and continued on the dirt road to the graffiti-covered water tank, then further east and north, to the Schabarum Trail (this mileage is not indicated on the Authority maps--however, the distance is probably roughly 3/4 of a mile). It is then .7 miles on the Schabarum Trail to the Turnbull Canyon Trail, then 1.3 miles west and southwest to get back to the trailhead. That makes it about seven miles for the day.

Other hikes I've taken the Puente Hills Landfill Native Habitat Authority system: Hikes #39, 40, 42, 44, and 46.

Comments: I really needed this walk, as I have been eating like a total pig the past few days. I had a party on Friday night, a political reception on Saturday, then a massive Mother's Day Brunch with the family on Sunday. During this time, the only hike I took was a mere four miles, on Saturday.

I'm still feeling fat, which is probably not just mental. I ate WAY too much over the weeknd. Unfortunately (from a purely hiking point of view), things are still too busy to manage an overnight getaway to the Mojave. I had to finish another job application for a position that closes on the 13th (bad for hiking, but good if this leads to employment!). And I really need to get some writing done before I take off, again (again, bad for hiking, but potentially good for future employment prospects). Hence, the Mojave thing gets put off for another week. :(

Funny thing about lupine--I never realized how ubiquitous this plant is. But now that I know what it looks like in general (ignoring the different varieties I've been seeing), it's everywhere. I've seen it in pretty much all of my Puente Hills hikes. It's been seen on pretty much all of my San Gabriel Mountain hikes, too. I saw both a pygmy version and a full-sized version in the Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve. I saw it in Joshua Tree. And I'm pretty sure I saw it in the Mojave Preserve.

The calender still says it's spring, but the hills are turning brown. I think this is all wild rye.

Eucalyptus tree with a rope hanging on a branch. I assume there was once a tire or knot at the end of this rope. It's hanging over a pretty big drop off. I wonder if the rope broke while someone was doing swings over the canyon?

I don't see the monkey shape in these flowers, but that's where they're called. These guys are pretty common all over southern California.


  1. Gotta love the lupine. I guess they won't be around too much longer, maybe more in the higher elevations. I'm not sure when they dissapear for the season but I've been seeing a lot more pea pods coming from them. Good luck with the employment prospects!

  2. Yeah, on my Jones Saddle hike a week or so ago I noticed that the seed pods outnumbered the buds by a wide margin.

    Thanks for the good wishes.