So I went on my first real backpacking trip this weekend. First off you should check out the pictures. I got to break in my new pack and sleeping bag (I'm so glad I've got a real sleeping bag now. It's so good to sleep surrounded by down in the great outdoors). And had a blast.
We dropped into a stream bed at the Escandito camp (which we had to drive through Ft. Liggand army base to get to), and then proceeded to walk thorough the stream down to Arroyo Seco camp grounds where we left my car so we could get out. A few months ago I would not have thought that a Tiedeman fishing trip would ever seem tame, but this trip certainly did just that.
With 30-40 pounds of gear on my back, we (Mike, Rob, Naomi, and I) wandered rock hopping, stream wading and posion oak avoiding down the river. We had almost no idea where we were in spite of Rob having brought 7.5 minute topological maps. Part of that was that we were having a hard time beliving them when they said that after the first 2 hours of hiking we had gone less than a mile.
Turns out we read the map correctly, it's just that the going got a little easier as we got out of the overgrown forrest and starting hitting some larger pools of water which we swam through. It was a ton of fun to go swimming down the river dragging my pack with everything inside of it in a dry bag. And my camera case worked incredible well. Every time I took it out to get a picture, not a drop of water had made it to my camera.
Saturday night we were getting a little worried as the sun was going down and progress was slow. We eventually settled on a decent camp site (I was very glad I had a sleeping pad to put on the rocks though) where we cooked dinner and had a very restful sleep, and hoped that we had made it more than half way down the trek.
The next day we started out as early as the coffee woke everybody up and could get going. I learned most of how to make the coffee to get Mike up and going that I'm going to need to know how to do if we're ever out just the two of us. This is of course likely as the best current guess is that Mike is grooming me to replace Rob when/if he settles down to start spawning.
Sunday was beautiful though. The water was warm now that we were further down the stream, and the hiking was much easier. Though still I had a bit of work as I think the little control muscles around my ankles were getting a workout they hadn't planned on. And we ran into several groups of people in swimming holes on the second day who had hiked up from Arroyo Seco. Well that seems like the right idea, and what we'll do next time we go.
But we made it to the bridge to get out at about 3p.m. and to the camp site at 5p.m. Got to town. Got hydrated. Got Mike's car (going through the army base again). And wandered back to King City for dinner. I have a new favorite mexican dish I think. Chile Rellenos. At least at this taqueria in King City where they make them so tasty. And we made it back to Redwood City at about 11:30p.m. Still well within weekend time.
All in all it was a great trip, though it certainly does tell me that I'm going to need to be a bit more proactive in finding care for Ishy since I think I'll be doing more of this in the future. Hopefully I can spend some time with Craig's list and find someone I can trust before I need them.
And speaking of animals, we saw so many cool things this weekend. A badger that almost charged Mike's Audi (We think it's got a bit of dismorphia), a beaver in a river (so cool), a fox wandering through the fields and any number of ducks, quails, lizards, etc.
I definetly need to spend more time in the great outdoors.