February 23rd, 2008 – by: sdbleve
Brian, myself and Bobby at the top.
Ok, this morning Brian and I decided to do our third peak hike. My youngest son decided he wanted to join us this morning. He even asked if one of his friends could come with us. What the heck, the more the merrier. Todays challenge was to be Mount Woodson. There are a few different access points and we decided to do the eastern approach. This hike was going to be done using the access road that goes to the top for maintenance of the cellphone towers and water storage tanks that are on the peak. The climb up the service road is very steep. I should have known what I was getting myself into when I mentioned what I was doing to the lady that got me started on this hiking kick. I have know her for a few months now and she is familiar with my fitness level.
There were huge boulders at the top that the road ran right between.
I should have picked up on the non verbal, hesitation, and non convincing "OK" when I told her what we were planning. I should have listened more closely when she was telling me it was pretty steep. She even mentioned that she has to stop several times when she hikes this route. I heard that, but listening to her voice tends to make my brain turn to mush (in a good way), so it went in one ear and out the other. Note to self, if J says she has to stop to catch her breath on a hike, plan to take an oxygen bottle. Perferably one that is on one of those little wheeled carts. Or better yet, but the Oxygen bottle on the back of a golf cart...and ride the golf cart to the top!!! :)
Even as taxing as this hike was, it was a beautiful route. (If you are not looking at your feet the whole time tellling them to just keep moving one in front of the other).
What is getting to be my usual view of my eldest son as we hike.
It starts out flat, along highway SR67 until it hits the service road. Then it turns into the path from hell. I did say it was steep right? I think the elevation gain is about 1200 ft in 1.8 miles or so. The 3 billy goats that were hiking with me this morning stayed with me for the first few hundred feet. Brian my eldest had once again liberated my MP3 player from me at the beginning of the hike. He put it one and just started. I saw him once or twice, but then did not see him until I reached the summit. My youngest son stayed with me a bit longer. This was his first hike with me, and we were enjoying each others company. (I wish that lasted the entire day, but that is a different story for a different blog). I continued my way up the service road, stopping when ever my breathing was sounding like a freight train, or my legs said, enough! I did have to stop more than any other hike.
..but I did mention this was steep right! It took an hour, but I did finally make the peak. The brats told me that they had been there for about 10 minutes or so. I broke out the snacks I had packed...and Brian quickly ate them before I knew what had happened to them. Damn kid!!!. He did save one for me, but not the one I was looking forward to. Once again...Damn kid! We took the obligitory pictures at the Summit, and then started back down.
Now I thought I would be able to keep up with the billy goats on my way down. Wrong!!! The road was so steep, that I had to be cautious, as I was concerned about my pace getting out of control and I would risk getting hurt. With my luck, I would start running, loose control and run off a cliff.
Even shortening my stride, and being carefull, I am feeling the effects of the walk. I now have some discomfort in one of my feet. I hope I did not give myself a stress fracture. It does not hurt that much, and is intermitent. I will rest it, and take it easy for the next week. If I decide to do a hike next saturday. It will not be a peak hike. Will be something flat with lots of scenery. It has been raining here in San Diego
and it is very green right now. I will have to check out my Afoot and Afield book for something pretty to hike.
The pictures in this entry were taken on my way down from the peak. I was concentrating to much on keeping moving on the way up. On the way down, I was able to enjoy my surroundings a lot more. I loved the way the giant boulder came right up along side the roadway. It was a bright, clear, cool day, so it was perfect for a hike, and perfect for taking photos.