Friday, April 5, 2013
Hike 2013.017 -- Altadena Crest Trail
Hiked Wednesday, April 3. I can't believe it's already April, and I haven't been up to Henninger Flats all year. So I was planning to head up there today. But for reasons that no one would want to hear, I decided to do the Altadena Crest Trail, instead.
The east end of this trail is down below Pinecrest Avenue. But, rather than crossing the bridge and heading towards Henninger, you turn sharply to the left, just before the bridge, and head up a hill. The trail can be followed about four miles in total, with a short break around Loma Alta and Rubio Canyon Roads. Today, I walked no more than 1.5 miles to the west. I stopped at a canyon that had Indian Paintbrush growing, the same this year as it has many other times along this path.
The thing is, if you go much further, there's a climb, then a fire road, then a house with an annoyingly loud dog that I didn't feel like having to listen to.
I mainly walk for the exercise, but I like having the camera handy in case anything interesting happens. I also like to shot wildflowers, when in season. It's been a dry year here, so the wildflowers are scarce. And most of what you see is non-native: wild mustard, Spanish broom, common vetch. I did see a single Canterbury bell plant, and two or three lupine. Oh, yes, and a WHOLE BUNCH OF SAGE.
So I've been humming "Deep in the Heart of Texas" all night. "The sage in bloom, smells like perfume." Also, very attractive to bees. The hills practically buzz with activity when the sage is this thick.
Easy 3 miles for the day. Lots of pictures. Short post.
BTW, there's a trio of crosses as you make your way around one of the "coves" of the mountain face. Oftentimes, there are various objects wrapped around the largest cross, which is right adjacent to the trail.
On the day I hiked, there were many ball caps with the words, "Julius Klein Camp 19".
I thought maybe Julius Klein was a firefighter who died here, and that's why they had the crosses and the hats.
However, a google search did not support that theory. Instead, he would appear to have been a. . . Well, you can google that yourself.
[Incidentally, on a later trip, I saw caps, framed certificates, and other materials related to two firefighters who did die here in Altadena. And there were only two crosses. Not sure if the crosses came first, or the memorial].