Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Hike 93: Eaton Canyon Nature Center to Sam Merrill Trailhead

I've done this hike several times. The first time was as Hike 31, in early March. I also did various portions of the Altadena Crest Trail several times before and after then.

From the nature center, I suspect it's about seven miles roundtrip. It took me at least 3 1/2 hours, and even my slow walk is easily 2 mph. Lots of ups and downs, too, so it can be a tiring hike, especially if it's hot. There's not much shade along this route.

When I left my house, around 8:30am, it was still foggy. But the fog thinned as I drove north and was completely gone by the time I got to Eaton Canyon. This is actually not too different from my last trip up here, when I planned to do this hike, but the fog had already burned off, so I decided to do a shorter, uncounted hike.

I might have been better off doing the same thing today, because I have been absolutely beat since getting back this afternoon. It was in the low 70s when I started, but the low 90s by the time I got back. Heck, even most of the joggers were already wrapping things up by the time I got started.

One nifty thing I saw today was a number of woodpeckers. Of course, I heard them before I saw them. Unfortunately, they didn't photograph very well, however. In real-life, their red crests really stood out in the morning sun.

While the fog layer at the foothills was gone early, the fog layer remained a bit longer at lower altitudes. While on my outbound leg, I was treated to a veiw of Downtown LA's Library Tower, just poking above the inversion. Library Tower is the tallest building west of the Mississippi. The rest of the downtown skyscrapers weren't tall enough to see over the fog.

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