Just Jeff's Hiking Page

"Going to the woods is going home, for I suppose
we came from the woods originally."

- John Muir

Big Sur State Park, CA
2 July 05

The Colonial Tree
I think I'll need some bigger tree huggers...


On Hwy 1 near Big Sur State Park.


Another view on the highway.

Little Sur, Los Padres National Forest, 27-28 August 2005

We went for a quick overnight on the Little Sur River in Los Padres National Forest. We started at Bottcher's Gap...I was surprised how hot it was! Just crossing the coastal ridge made the temperature increase almost 20°F! Bugs were stupid crazy up there, too! So we got our fire permit (required even for my JetBoil) and started hiking down the Pico Blanco Jeep trail. We walked 1.5 miles down the Jeep trail, then another mile down the trail to Little Sur camp. The kids were troopers and stayed in an awesome mood the whole time. After about half a mile down the Jeep trail, a huge doe bounded across the trail about 30 ft away from us while we were drinking some water. "This is why I go hiking." Makes a dad proud.

Little Sur camp is right on the river. Other than being an established camp with hardpacked soil, it's pretty nice...clean, secluded, quiet, and nestled down inside a deep valley. While I set up the hammocks and cooked dinner (Ramen, trail mix and rice), the kids played in the river and got their clothes all wet (even though I told them not to!). Then they showed me a track they found...big claws, about 3" long and 4" wide. Looked like a mountain lion to me! Not sure how territorial they are, but we slept about 20 ft from it, so we were definitely in its territory! I hung the food...

At bedtime, we all told scary stories. Mine was about a friend masquerading as Bigfoot and walking up to kids in a hammock...then I yelled "BAH!" and the kids almost jumped out of their hammocks!

The next morning I found a tripod with a 15" handmade dreamcatcher hanging from it. Not sure how it got there, but it was a pretty cool thing to stumble upon.

The hike out was a little tougher than the way in...it was all uphill! Once we got onto the dusty Jeep trail and the temperature rose, the little one got a little grumpy! So I carried his pack while his brother set a blistering pace to get out of there, rushing from shady spot to shady spot. After a while, I was carrying both packs...so I clipped them onto my backpack straps and felt like a pack mule.

Finally, I heard "Dad! We made it!" and came around the corner to see the gate. We took a few pictures, and as soon as we stepped onto the parking lot the bugs swarmed us. Run to the car, dig through the pack for my keys, and we were outta there!


Getting ready to leave


Bottcher's Gap Trailhead


We started with 1.5 miles on a Jeep trail


Checking the compass


Ready hiker


Resting at the Redwood


Trail to Little Sur Camp...another mile to go!


Six million switchbacks...


Good morning


It was about 50°F and he slept like this!


The view from my hammock


Anyone know what kind of track this is?


Carrying the kids' packs


We made it!

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