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City: Rancho Palos Verdes
Begins: Jul 6, 2013
Date: Sat, Jul 6th, 2013
Entry Visits: 820
Journal Visits: 19,581
Guestbook Views: 2,115
Guestbook Entrys: 47
I slept really well in the hotel despite the storm that blew threw in the late evening. There wasn't much rain but the wind was really strong. By the morning it had blown through and it was sunny and warm. I had a reasonable breakfast in the hotel and met Joe, the shuttle driver on the dot at 9:00 am. Joe was a retired teacher and a really interesting guy with lots of stories and experiences that kept us chatting all the way on both journeys. I couldn't have asked for better service - kudos to Joe and the Great Outdoor Store.
After sending out a Spot “I'm starting" message at the trailhead I set off on the fairly gentle trail that would climb about 1000 ft over about 8 miles. It was quite busy and I met up with a number of hikers going in both directions. After an hour and a half I came upon the “photographer's point" which provided a nice view of granite cliffs. After passing numerous small lakes that could easily be mistaken for flooded meadows, I reached Senaca Lake which was beautiful with the step granite cliffs rising out of the lake. The trail went along the lake shoreline for some way and that afforded just gorgeous views. After a little hillock I came down to the shoreline of Little Senaca Lake where it started to rain. I didn't really want to get wet and I didn't think it would last long enough to warrant getting the wet weather gear out so I decided to take a break under a big pine tree. A couple of hikers came the other way and we chatted for a bit. One of them explained that he just got his feet wet because with all the rain lately the lake level is higher than usual and a section of the shoreline trail is under the water. When I got there I decided I didn't want to get my feet wet so late in the day so I took the rock scrambling route. It went pretty high to get past a sheer granite wall but overall not too difficult, especially compared to some of the climbs I did on the AT. After getting around this small lake I then went past some more magnificent granite peaks and then I started to feel as though I'd had enough for the day. The terrain was very rocky so campsites were few and far between. The few flat grassy spots were very damp and looked like they might flood if it rained hard. Eventually I found one beside a small lake that looked like it had been camped on many times before. Just as I started to set up my tent it started to rain, heavy this time. I rushed to get the tent up and myself and the gear inside before everything got soaked. It rained for nearly an hour and then it stopped and the sun came out. This gave me the opportunity to go get some water and cook dinner which I just managed to finish when the rain started again. As I'm writing this it's hammering down and there is lightning and thunder. One clap of thunder was really loud and came shortly after the lightning flash. Hopefully this will blow over soon and I'll get some sleep. The temperature is also starting to drop so I think it's time to get into bed.
Mad Dogs & Englishmen, Part Quatre
The Continental Divide Trail is a national scenic trail that runs from Mexico to Canada via New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho and Montana. This unfinished trail can potentially span up to 3,100 miles. Learn more: www.continentaldividetrail.org
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