A day of solitude surrounded by miles of untouched wilderness and snow capped peaks, all contained in a Sunday hike in LA’s backyard. Even I didn’t think that was possible.
Hiking on the west side of Mount Whitney gives an entirely different perspective on a popular region dominated by the lower 48’s highest mountain. Jagged 14,000 foot peaks, crystal clear lakes, sprawling alpine meadows, and beautiful mountain basins dot a vast landscape that is seldom visited by hikers outside of the narrow confines of the JMT.
We concluded our family weekend in the Sierra with a day hike to the Treasure Lakes near Bishop. This is another short trail that gives hikers a great taste of the High Sierra without too much effort.
We returned to the mountains this past weekend for another taste of early summer in the High Sierra. This time, the whole family tagged along and we did some more family friendly dayhikes out of Owen’s Valley. Our first hike was in Little Lakes Valley, which is one of the easiest access points to the High Sierra and also one of the range’s flattest trails. It’s the perfect trail for someone’s first trip to the Sierra.
This trip was the two year anniversary of Callie’s first backpacking trip and the launch of CaliTrails. We celebrated the occasion by taking our first backpacking trip of the year on one of the Sierra’s best dog friendly trails.
The Sierra season is quickly approaching, so Callie and I took advantage of one last opportunity to get a big training hike in before the summer’s adventures begin. Our destination this time was the San Bernardino Peak trail, a first for both of us but definitely not our last. With gorgeous open views and very few hikers to contend with, this is a fantastic trail to hike with your dog.
The Three Points trail is a grim reminder of the devastation of the Station Fire. Looking at the burned landscape, it’s hard to believe that is has been nearly five years since the fire took place.
We returned to one of our favorite romping grounds to tackle one of Southern California’s classic day hikes. The Baldy Bowl to Devi’s Backbone loop provides easy access to LA’s highest peak while offering incredible views and some intimidating exposure along the way.
The Kalalau Trail is neither dog friendly nor in California. It really has nothing to do with the whole point of this site. However, we do travel out of state sometimes, and we often leave Callie behind when we do that. Every once in awhile, we find a hike that is so amazing that it rivals the best that California has to offer. The Na Pali Coast is one of those areas, and so when we hiked the Kalalau Trail this past December, it felt natural to document and share it as I normally would with a local trail. I plan on making this exception again in the future, but only for trails that are truly extraordinary like this one.
Under the right conditions, the Cucamonga Peak trail transcends what one expects from a local Los Angeles hike. Two years ago on a beautiful winter day, a ten month old Callie and I shared an amazing experience on the trail. I was blown away by the prospect that a hike with scenery and solitude that matched the Sierra was within such close proximity of my doorstep. That hike was a huge inspiration for the creation of this website, and I have been looking forward to returning to it ever since.