Sunday, May 28 we started early and headed up to the mountains on the south side of Big Bear in the San Bernardino National Forest. We were off on a new adventure and exploratory hike that Diane had recently suggested to the group. I am always excited to explore a new area. We started at 7 am to avoid the heat of the day. We had planned on 8 miles out and back and an elevation of 1,400 feet. We knew we would have views of the north side of San Gorgonio at some point.
The day was going well, the weather was perfect and the trail was quiet. This is not a well used trail which is also right up my alley. Since we were on a new trail Joe took the time to print a map of the area from caltopo.com which is a great site to make and print maps that also show the trails and elevation changes. We stopped several times to check out the map and decided instead of doing an out and back hike that we would do a loop hike. We should still end up with about 8 miles.
We saw a huge group who were on there way back to their van in the parking area. They had been in camp for a few days. We made it to the campsite in a couple of hours and saw a family of three who were also on their way back from an overnight trip. The campsite was so nice with a couple of fire pits and lots of places to pitch tents.
As we sat for a quick break we decided we would bring the group back for an overnight backpack. We had another surprise under a rock below the sign above. A fellow hiker from the group had left a note saying he had gone down the same trail we would be heading down after our break. We thought he had left the note for us. We found out later from him that he had left it for Search and Rescue so they would know where to look for him should he not make it home.
The hike so far had been pretty easy as it was not to steep. We did have to make our way over, under and around some trees.
The first part of the hike down the creek trail was not too difficult. After a while we found ourselves hiking on the side of various hills, more trees to traverse, through the brush and berry bushes. We also had to make our way through the creek and over and down some small waterfalls. The trail was old and not well used so at some points we lost the trail and found it again. It was so much fun. A REAL ADVENTURE. Lucky for us the day was cool as we were working every muscle group and burning lots of calories as this was pretty much all down hill.
We made great time down the hill even with all the obstacles. We had one more great view of San Gorgonio.
One more photo……..
I’m sure some of you might be wondering if we ran into any snakes. Well….. we hadn’t until Diane mentioned it. I quickly said oh I wish you wouldn’t have said that. Now we will probably see one. Not much longer than half hour later, boom….. Joe turns around and says “snake”. I do not like snakes. UGH. We wait as the snake slithers across the shaded trail. I don’t know how he even saw it. The trail was covered by some bushes overhead and was pretty dark with lots of leaves on the ground and he was pretty much was camouflaged. Joe, on the other hand loves snakes and stops to take photos and videos. Diane thinks they are magnificent creatures as well so they are standing so close I am afraid that he will strike at them. I had already made my way behind the two of them while they distracted him (all snakes are him to me). I finally talked them into moving away from the snake so we could get safely away.
We made it back to Highway 38 and then had to hike back to the parking area. I am guessing it was about a mile and half street walk. It was about 3 and 1/2 hours down hill and back to the cars. We told Diane at least five times how much we loved the trail. She was so happy to hear that as she wasn’t sure we would enjoy it as much as she had about 5 or 6 years.