Scodie Mountain Loop From Walker Pass Campground

April 30th, 2017
Scodie Mountain (7,294')
9.8 miles, 2900' gain
[Pics] [Map]

This was another Sierra Club I provisional for an Orange County Wilderness Travel Course staffer and this time it was Dennis Loya aka Bear from Modjeska Group.  Since it was just a day hike this one didn't count for students needing an experience trip but it was a good chance to get out and hike a pretty area that's only a few hours from LA.  Plus they got to hang out with us!

Newport Harbor Pizza Paddle - April 2017

April 27th, 2017
[Pics] [Map]

Once a month a group of us get together and paddle Newport Harbor after work. We launch from the beach next to the Newport Aquatic Center and paddle over to Pizza Nova in the main harbor in a combination of kayaks and SUPs. There we dock our boats, partake in feast of pizza and beer, and then paddling back to the cars. We do this all year round and in pretty much all conditions. Light, dark, rain, and the dead of SoCal winter where you're tempted to put a sweater on with your flip flops.

You can find writeups of other pizza paddles here. For notifications on when we're doing the next one see our facebook group Pizza Paddle Associates. (Send me a message so I know you're not a spam bot!)

We're back to launching in the daylight which is always nice especially when the occasional man down happens along the way...

Panamint City & Sentinel Peak via Surprise Canyon

April 14th &  15th, 2017
Sentinel Peak (9,634')
[Pics] [Map] [CalTopo]

Panamint City is an old mining ghost town on the western edge of Death Valley accessible only by a fairly rough 7.5 mile hike and fairly well preserved as these things go.  In addition to several mines to explore there are a number of cabins that are maintained by visitors and year round water sources make it an attractive location for a backpack.

It's also possible to do two Desert Peak Section peaks from there which is why I'd come back in 2012 for a three day.  After making the long uninteresting slog down the ridge and back to Porter I always said I wanted to come back but that I'd only do Sentinel.

And as it happened fellow WTC staffer Gracia Plascencia was leading it this year as a combination Sierra Club I provisional and WTC Experience trip over Easter weekend.

Sespe & Willett Hot Springs

April 8th & 9th, 2017
Sespe Hot Springs
16.4 miles, 2000' in
18.2 miles, 2600' out (with a side trip to Willett Hot Springs)
[Pics] [Map] [CalTopo]

After last weekend's snow climb of Mount Silliman I was tempted to head back to the Sierra again and maybe do Alta or something similar.  However a big storm was predicted to hit (unusually big for April) and Jen and I ended up looking local.

Sespe Hot Springs is located in Los Padres and only a few hours from OC.  Just drive up to Ojai and then drive a bit further along the 33.  Of the three trailheads listed by the forest service Piedra Blanca was was 16 miles each direction and followed the Sespe River which sounded like a nice way to spend 2 days.

Mount Silliman In The Snow

April 1st to 3rd, 2017
Mount Silliman (11,188')
[Pics] [Map]

Mount Silliman is one of those peaks that gets done quite a lot by WTC staff.  I did it in 2011 as a two day and again in 2016 as a very nice and relaxed three day but I'd never been out that way in the winter.

It has the advantage of a reasonable approach (we did about 6 miles and 2k gain to camp the first day) and spectacular views from the top.  This trip came about after I happened to see a picture of the area on Facebook right before an open weekend.