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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Day 608: Borrego Trail - Red Rock Trail - Whiting Ranch Wilderness - Limestone Canyon - Mountain Lion versus Coyote!

Red Rock in Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park

Day #608 * Hike #714 * New Track #599
Sunday July 15, 2012
Borrego Trail - Red Rock Trail - Foothill Ranch, CA
Whiting Wilderness - Limestone Canyon
Mountain Lion versus Coyote!
My Tripometer: 1.25 Hours * 4 Mile * +375 Feet
 
 Trailhead

Directions:
From the Los Angeles area, take the 5 or 405 north to the 133.  Take the 133 North, a toll road to the 241 South.  Your total toll will be $3.00.  Exit on Alton Parkway and turn left.  Turn right on Portola Parkway and then left into the shopping center at Market Place.  The trailhead parking is on the left.  You must pay an additional $3.00 to park, unless you park over in the shopping center for free.

I did neither.  My wife called and said that I had her bathing suite in the car!  OMG!  So, I took the 20 minute drive back to Irvine to drop off the suite at the Hilton where we were staying.  I then turned back around and ended up reaching the trailhead an hour later.

Borrego Trailhead - Mountain Lion recently spotted?
 
**On my way to work today I heard over the radio of another Mountain Lion siting along this trail.  I went into work and Google quickly brought up this recent video:
 
 
Are you kidding me!  The Coyote was howling at this Mountain Lion on the same day that I hiked this random trail?!  What are the chances.  If I hadn't gone back to the hotel, would I have encountered this creature?!  Amazing, huh!
 
Ahh, fresh water for the bunny!

I charged down the trail fast.  It was a race against time due to the soccer game later that afternoon.  At first, the trail was quite sloppy as it shared the same common route as this stream.  The bunny scared me because I did not notice it until the last minute and the Mountain Lion sign was still haunting my mind; if I only knew...

 Trail is mostly shaded at first

 Mountain Lions?  -  No, just two deer!

 Okay, where are we now?

 I began to follow the Mustard Trail to the right
There was another hiker in front of me but I couldn't; ketchup
--Come'on, I couldn't resist...

 After passing another trail, I veered off to view the Red Rock...

 The trail is coming to an end shortly

 Red Rocks...



 
There is a sign suggesting to not climb the sandstone.  I did not disobey.  I wish I had more time but I simply did not.  I began my trot and kept it consistent all the way back to the car.  I ran the two-mile distance in just 20 minutes; not bad for trail running.  Granted, it was mostly down a low grade hill but still, not bad...
 
Mountain Lion Update:
I heard on the news tonight that they caught the Mountain Lion.  Officials bated it into a cage with a piece of meat.  I learned that a mountain biker died on this trail about 8 years ago from a mountain lion attack.  In all of my hiking adventures, I've only been fortunate enough to see a mountain lion once.  This happened well before I began my 1000 hike adventure.  Let me tell you, I was six miles from my car and nearly 15 miles from the main roadway.  I was freaked out.  The mountain lion in this video is much smaller than the one that I encountered.  Nevertheless, I'm sure it would have it's way with me if it wanted to.
 
--Alyssa has several more soccer tournaments lined up down this way in the upcoming months.  I imagine that I will test fate and return to the area...

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