Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Madera Canyon or Up

Feeling like a little hike on the day after Christmas. Marie, her son, Aaron, June and John headed into the Coronado National Forest for a short walk or climb.
The weather was going to be great, clear skies and 72 to 77 degrees for the high. We drove up into the park as far as we could and parked the truck, at 5,400 feet elevation, grabbed our packs, and headed for one of the trails, called "Old Baldy".
We all wondered just how far we could go, could we get all the way up to the top? This trail is mostly up traveling through the trees, winding our way up, and UP. Aaron was the point man, periodically jogging ahead, making sure the way was safe. (OK, he was looking for a place for the rest of the athletes to take a break) Seeing that all of us are in peak condition, we took a number of breaks, just to view the scenery. (YES, we also gulped water and caught our breath, too.) The snow from a few days earlier, was still on the trail, in a few areas, making things a little slippery.
We made it to the saddle (this is an area between two mountain peaks) Mt Wrightson was to our left 9,543 high and Mt Hopkins, at 8585 feet, was to our right. Mt Hopkins is where the Whipple Observatory is.
This short sprint took 2 1/2 hours, traveled 2 miles, and got us to just over 1,600 feet above the truck or 7,000 feet of elevation.
It was time for a rest, not that we needed it. While we rested we also had lunch.
While lounging we ate our lunch of vegetables, fruit, and smoked oysters. Once recovered and refreshed, we all (With the exception of Aaron) thought it would be a good idea to walk back down this little hill, not that we couldn’t climb another 2,543 feet to the top of Mt Wrightson!
It only took a little over an hour to get back down. Now what is it that rolls down hill? Hmm, I forget.
When we started the truck we noticed that the outside temperature was 67 degrees, as we drove back down to Green Valley the temperature continued to climb to 77 degrees. A little altitude sure makes a difference in temperature.
Safely back at home it was time to rest UP.

(The picture of Mt Wrightson was taken from the Saddle. Only 2,543 more feet to the top)


MichiganMarty said...

Wow! Sounds like you guys enjoyed yourselves. I couldn't help but wonder what distant towns and such looked like when you are up that high.

December 28, 2006 3:15 PM  
MichiganMarty said...

Hey, here's a biker's question for you: Are the roads and scenery around there conducive to motorcycle touring?

December 28, 2006 3:16 PM  

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