Sunday, September 26, 2010

Hike 89: Puente Hills

Hiked Sunday, September 26. The first time I hiked this area was back in early April. I haven't been back since May, at the latest. Once it started getting warm and the rattlesnakes started coming out, I didn't like this area because the grass grew so close to the trail that I came across rattlesnakes a few times rather suddenly. Best way to get bit is to startle a rattlesnake, so I stopped coming down here.

But today, I figured I only had time for a short hike before the heat got oppressive, so I opted for a return to the Puente Hills.

I tried to get a relatively early start to beat the heat. Only partially succeeded. Hiking started around 8:30pm, up the Coyote Trail. Looped around, came back down the Native Oak Trail, then returned to the Seventh Avenue trailhead. 5.5 miles overall. Not very scenic. By the time I finished, at 10:30am, it was already 91 degrees. But at least I got a short hike in.

It looks like the Puente Hills Landfill Native Habitat Authority has done a pretty aggressive job of cutting back the dying annual grasses. The trails I walked on today all had wide downed areas, which meant less of a chance of sneaking up on a rattlesnake.

One drawback of this trail is that it's all single track. That by itself is not a drawback, except that the trails are heavily used by mountain bikers. I had to step to the side at least a dozen times to make room for bikes coming down the hill. The trails are steep enough that bikers are pretty slow moving up, so you won't get passed by many bikes.

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