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Sunday, November 21, 2010

DAY 7: MONTECITO PEAK, FAILED!

DAY 7: MONTECITO PEAK, FAILED!
5.5 Miles  +1800 Feet

7 Day Summary: 27.5 Miles  +5950 Feet




I was really excited to do this today!  Last night, I was surfing the web for the perfect Sunday hike and I found one in Montecito, which is just 30 minutes from my house.  You take the 101 North out of Ventura and exit at Olive Mill Rd.  Turn right and stay straight.  The road turns into Cold Springs Rd.  Pass the 192 and then turn left at the top (East Mountain Road).  Drive to the creek crossing (1st picture) and park.  The next two pictures are the trail head on the other side of the creek.  I suppose you can start there, but I started here:



I only brought Sami with me today.  She'll be turning 2 years old on New Years Day, 2011.  Domino is nearly 12 and retired from long trails with steep climbing.  I passed Kevin's Bench on this trail but did not take pictures because there was a couple with a 2 year old dipping in the water pools.  I prolly should have paid more attention to the mileage on the "connector trail", but I didn't and as a result, check out my video:


For some reason, the video would not upload here.  So, I placed it on my backup blog.
You can check it out at http://www.usahiker.blog.com/

***EDIT: It didn't work there either so I just made a YOUTUBE page:

Well, that about summed up my experience.  I guess getting lost is just part of who I am.  I've always loved maps and in fact, I used to draw my own maps of real places, imaginary places and little car cities that I made.  I've utilized my map reading skills on several jobs that I've held over the years, but no one taught me how to read a topo map.  I understand them but I guess everything becomes a blur out there.

Not my fault today though!  I had no map and there were no signs.  But I did try so hard to push my way to the top.  Negotiating my way down the mountain mud slide, I slipped once and fell on my behind.  Sami and I were both excited to see the main trail again.  We began walking back but took a left instead of a right and started working our way back up the mountain again!  The couple with the two year old was right there and they told me that the trail looped back around so I said, why not.  I reached the overlook and spoke to two other hikers.  They pointed to the correct trail that does lead to the peak.  They advised to either take a flashlight or go very early.  It's a long way up and when this guy went up on his birthday many years ago, he had a very difficult time coming down in the pitch black.  They informed me that there are several alternate trails up there but the main idea is to reach the top ridge and then trek left.  There is a large eucalyptus tree known as "the tree".  This marks the Peak of Montecito.  So in theory, I now know how to feat this mountain.

In my rules, I will not do the same trail twice.  Correct, but I can overlap if need be to achieve new trails.  I will only need to overlap about 1.5 miles each way, so I'm good.  Additionally, I saw another trail head sign near the corner of Cold Springs Road and East Mountain Road.  So, I'll be up this way this way at least a couple more times over the next, 993 days!  Before I leave you, here are a few other pictures from the day...







I found this trail at:  http://www.vcstar.com/news/2008/feb/18/montecito-peak/
The plan was to climb about 2500 feet.  I think I came close to 2000 if not over.  However, i don't want to cheat my stats so based on the time spent climbing, I estimate +1850 for the entire trip.  Longest one of the season, but a disappointment.  I have plenty of time to make it up. 



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