Hiking Stats as of 3/29/2015
Total Trips:
Total Distance:
Total Elevation Gain:
 2,441.95 miles
 666,366 feet

Welcome to Mountain Hiker!

This site contains my trip reports for a variety of northern California peaks, along with the occasional high Sierra and SoCal peak.
Recent Trips
Mar 22, 2015 - Bob Walker Ridge

Mar 21, 2015 - Monument Peak / Weller Peak

Mar 14, 2015 - Brushy Sky High / Bally Peak

Mar 12, 2015 - PK 1140 (Round Valley)

Mar 10, 2015 - Round Valley Regional Preserve Loop
After paying my first ever visit to Round Valley Regional Preserve the day before, I had a good opportunity to visit again due to it being a City Council night (meeting starts at 7 PM). Having taken around 1 1/2 hours the day before to complete the loop at a leisurely pace which included a side trip up to the high point inside the loop, I knew that I would have to make sure I kept up a better pace today in order to make sure I was back to work in time for the meeting. I left work a bit after (Read More)

Mar 09, 2015 - Round Valley Regional Preserve Loop

Feb 28, 2015 - Chitterden Ridge / Sugar Pine Peak / Bloomer Hill / South Butte
A couple of months ago I met Jobe Wymore as he joined up with Andrew, Chris and I to summit Table Mountain, the high point of Kings County. Jobe is an avid peakbagger, and is actively pursuing a quest to summit the county high point of every western state. He'd already completed the 50 state highpoints some time ago, and so this most recent trip to California was a mere short hop for him from his Portland home. During our hike of Table Mountain we discussed peaks that we both had not (Read More)

Feb 22, 2015 - Cedar Mountain
Due to the nature of this hike, this trip report is brief and non-descriptive. Please contact me for specifics regarding this trip if you would like more information For this weekend's hike Andrew, David and I got together for our first group hike since Laveaga Peak several months earlier. Today's objective was Cedar Mountain, a CC peak buried in the Diablo Range between Del Valle Park on the west and Mines Road on the east. The trip from Del Valle would be longer than the route via Mines (Read More)

Feb 20, 2015 - Pico Blanco
My time in Monterey was coming to a close, and I was ready to go out in style. With my conference ending at noon, I would have a nice half day for a final goodbye hike. The plan was to revisit Bottchers Gap, this time heading out to Pico Blanco, a nice looking CC peak in the opposite direction from Mt. Carmel, the peak I visited Wednesday evening. I arrived back at Bottchers Gap around 1:15, and spent a few minutes looking for Larry, the onsite ranger but I could not locate him. He was (Read More)

Feb 19, 2015 - Chews Ridge
Having visited Mt. Carmel Wednesday night and with big plans for Friday, I wanted to squeeze in an easy hike following once the conference let out Thursday evening. I planned on a drive to Chews Ridge, a peak that although is not on any peak lists, has over 2,000 feet of prominence which is what drew my attention. At over 5,000 feet tall, it stands as the highest point around, although given my plan to hike in the dark I was not expecting much in the way of views. Leaving Monterey I went (Read More)

Feb 18, 2015 - Devils Peak / Carmel, Mount
I had left my camera at home for my trip to Monterey, and somehow messed up on my camera phone which wound up not having any pictures when I got back to the hotel following this outing...not a big loss, since it was night anyway and I had only tried to take a dozen or so photos . Today was the first day of my Monterey conference, and while I was fortunate to be in an area where I could pick up some new peaks, I was limited to hiking during the non desirable hours of the very early AM or late (Read More)

Feb 17, 2015 - El Chamisal
I was headed to Monterey for a 3 day conference, running Wednesday through Friday, which would give me a chance to do some peak bagging in an area that is normally nearly a 3 hour drive away from my house. With the conference starting Wednesday morning I was staying in Monterey overnight on Tuesday. My original plan was to hike up to a newly recognized CC peak in the vicinity of Mission Peak. This situation is a bit odd, as I had been to the previously recognized CC peaks in the area (Read More)

Feb 15, 2015 - Little Blue Peak / Butte Rock
Following a 16 mile hike chasing some peaks east of Calistoga the day before, I was headed even a little further north, in pursuit of one of the most revered of California county high points - Little Blue Peak, the highpoint of Yolo County. Less than 10 miles, less than 2,000 feet of gain, but legendary bushwhacking and poison oak along the standard route leading to tales of misery from most who visit. Andrew, Chris and I were planning on tackling this one together, and in the days leading up (Read More)

Feb 14, 2015 - Bald Hill / High Point / Potato Hill / Grassy Hill / Duff
This winter has been heavily focused on the CC peak list, a collection of 302 peaks in coastal California areas. They provide a great alternative during the Sierra off-season, giving me ideas to visit places I would otherwise have not heard of. A great way to tour the western third of the State, from Oregon down to near San Luis Obispo. Today Kyle and I would team up again, aiming for 2 more CC peaks just south of Robert Louis Stevenson Park, east of Calistoga. While we were at it, there (Read More)

Feb 07, 2015 - Discovery Peak / Challenger Peak / Lewis, Mount
It had been almost a year since Jerry Kohn and I had been spotted as we made our way over Discovery Peak with intent of continuing on to visit Challenger Peak and Mt. Lewis. Challenger Peak has some small chance of being the actual highpoint of Alameda County, with the maps showing it having the same contour line of 3,840 as Discovery Peak, although its countour is smaller so it is assumed to be lower. Challenger has a 10 foot boulder on its summit, however, complicating things just a little (Read More)

Feb 01, 2015 - Call Mountains HP
Jerry Kohn and I had been discussing going after another one of the Diablo range CC peaks, down south towards the central part of the State. Of course most of these peaks have access issues, so planning and caution were of great import in developing a plan. Part of this plan was to head out on Super Bowl Sunday, thinking that if there was ever a day that people would more likely to be attached to their TV sets this was it. We originally had thought about Palo Escrito Peak farther to the (Read More)

Jan 29, 2015 - Las Trampas Peak
48 hours after my brief round up of 3 CC peaks in the East Bay, I once again was scheduled to attend a meeting, this time in Walnut Creek. I had made plans to have lunch with a former co-worker who I had worked with for 10 years prior to his departure. As such, there were no plans for hiking on the day, so I didn't have my GPS or camera, or even a change of clothes. But when my meeting ended a little before 11 AM, I was suddenly staring at 1 1/2 hours of time before the scheduled lunch. (Read More)

Jan 27, 2015 - Round Top / Vollmer Peak / Chaparral Peak / Grizzly Peak
I woke up knowing that this Tuesday promised to be a long day, but unfortunately less fun and more tiring than if I could spend the whole day hiking. I had an 8:30 meeting to get to in Oakland, requiring a ridiculously early departure from my house in Tracy. Serving as a bookend to this I had a 7 PM meeting to attend in Brentwood to close out the day. I planned on departing extra early, with the goal of bagging some easy CC peaks before the meeting started. I would then use my 1 hour lunch (Read More)

Jan 24, 2015 - Konocti - Clark Peak / Konocti - Wright Peak / Konocti - Howard Peak / Konocti - South Peak / Konocti - Buckingham Peak
On the way back from Baldy (the Tahoe version) 2 weeks ago I had told Kyle that we should look to get some more local peaks during the cool winter months rather than going to Tahoe quite so much. So fast-forward two weeks, and I suggested that we head off to Clear Lake, about a 2 hour drive north for Kyle and 3 hours for me, to hike the 5 peaks of Mt. Konocti. All 5 are on the CC list, and as such it was only the long distance drive that had kept me from this area before. I met Kyle at his (Read More)

Jan 19, 2015 - Panoche Hills HP / Panoche Mountain / Griswold Hills HP
It was Martin Luther King Day, and with the extra day off from work I wanted to get in a second weekend hike. David Sanger and I had been corresponding about hiking the Panoche Hills area, a small subset of the Diablo range located off I-5 in the middle of the State. We had three targets, Panoche Hills Highpoint, Ponoche Mountain and Griswold Hills HP, with Panoche Mountain and Griswold Hills HP being on the CC list. They would be done in three separate hikes, always an easier proposition (Read More)

Jan 17, 2015 - Antler Point / Poverty Ridge
Back at work following my annual extended Christmas vacation, my hiking activity had sadly slowed down to the typical one outing per week. But this weekend was the much appreciated 3-day variety with Martin Luther King, Jr holiday. With the extra day I had planned two local hikes, one for Saturday and one on Monday, both chasing after more CC Peaks with other hikers pursuing this same list of Coastal California peaks. Saturday's hike was to be the more challenging of the two, with a planned (Read More)

Jan 10, 2015 - Martis Peak / Baldy West Rim, Mount / Baldy, Mount
There are no pictures from this hike as I lost my camera at the end of the hike. A most unfortunate occurrence as the views to Lake Tahoe surrounded by the snow covered mountains were breathtaking... I called Kyle up Friday night to see if we were on for another visit up to Tahoe to get in some snowshoeing. He was up for it, and I suggested that we visit Mt. Rose, a Nevada County highpoint and on all the peak lists that I am working on. The downside was it would be a bit longer of (Read More)

Jan 03, 2015 - Table Mountain / Three Peaks / Johnson Peak
Due to the nature of these peaks this trip report will be brief and the pictures are largely only from the summits. Specific route information is available for each of these peaks at other sites. I'd been planning a 3 day trip for the last hike of my vacation with the idea of chasing down some county highpoints in central and southern California. I had been exchanging emails with Jobe Wymore, who I had never met but has completed several of the western states and was coming to California to (Read More)

Jan 01, 2015 - Santa Rosalia Mountain / Buzzards Roost / Pine Mountain
It was New Year's Day 2015, and with a long hike planned for January 3 I was looking for something not too difficult and not too far away to kick off the 2015 hiking year. I've been chasing after the CC peaks of late, as they have proven to be a fine source of local destinations which have been largely a great deal of fun. Today's plan was to head to the Santa Cruz Mountains in pursuit of Santa Rosalia Mountain and Pine Mountain, which would represent CC Peaks #65 and #66 in my peak count. (Read More)

Dec 29, 2014 - Twin Peaks / San Bruno Mountain / Scarper Peak
With just over a week left in my vacation I wanted to get in another day of hiking before strong winds and unseasonably cold temperatures set in the region over the coming days. I had just been up to Tahoe 2 days prior and didn't want to spend another day in the car, so I set my sights on 3 more CC peaks (#'s 62-64) on the peninsula which would pretty much clean out this area for me. These would range from the ridiculously easy (Twin Peaks) to moderate (Scarper), with the cumulative efforts (Read More)

Dec 27, 2014 - Wade BM
There had finally been a break in the winter storm pattern that had been in place for the past couple of months, leading to an opportunity to head up to the Sierra for the first snowshoe hike of the season. Today's objective would be Wade Benchmark, a peak standing 9,367 feet tall and on the OGUL list (number 40 for me). Saturday morning Kyle and I met up in Rancho Cordova and carpooled up US 50. Usually the trip to Tahoe takes a little over 2 1/2 hours from my house, but on this day, which (Read More)

Dec 20, 2014 - Bielawski, Mount / Chalk Mountain
Day 3 of my 20 day vacation (and the last one before my Mom comes out for a visit) was likely to be my last hiking opportunity for about a week, and as such I wanted to make the most of it. Once again recent rains meant unsettled weather in the Sierra, so I was searching for more local peaks to visit. I came up with Chalk Mountain, a CC listed peak in the Santa Cruz Mountains. In looking at the map I realized I could also make a brief side trip to Mt. Bielawski, the highpoint of Santa Cruz (Read More)

Dec 18, 2014 - Isabel, Mount / Hamilton, Mount / Copernicus Peak / Pyramid Rock
Today marked the first day of my 20 day vacation from work, and I could think of no better way to spend it than by hiking some more peaks. The forecast called for likely snow in the Sierra, so I decided to go after a series of four of the tallest five peaks in Santa Clara County (#1 - Copernicus, #2 - Mt. Isabel, #3 - Mt. Hamilton and #5 Pyramid Rock). Copernicus is the county highpoint (#24 for me) and a CC Peak, with Isabel and Pyramid Rock also being on the CC list. A successful trip (Read More)

Dec 14, 2014 - Walpert Ridge / Tolman Peak
Yet another weekend of unsettled weather was upon us, and as a result I decided to continue my pursuit of the CC Peaks. I have actually come to enjoy this pursuit, and if I don't do these peaks in winter chances are low I will want to do them in the summer heat. This really is the off-season for the Sierra, when the days are short and the snow is unconsolidated. So I wasn't too disappointed when I decided on a trip to Tolman Peak and Walpert Ridge, the latter being a CC peak, my 56th one to (Read More)

Dec 07, 2014 - Bennett Mountain / Bald Mountain / Red Mountain
With the early season rain and higher elevation snows continuing to restrict access to the high county, Kyle and I decided to pursue 3 more CC peaks in the Sonoma wine country, in nearly the same locations as we had been when we hit the Sonoma Mountains highpoint and Hood Mountain back on November 1. These would be #'s 53-55 on my CC Peak list count, on the way to 300. Bennett Mountain I drove up to Kyle's and we left his place at about 9:45 to head for the TH to Bennett Mountain where we (Read More)

Dec 04, 2014 - Jacks Peak / Misery, Mount
Today was the third and final day of Monterey peakbagging taking place during my free moments while at a conference. I had already been to 3 CC peaks, and todays goal was to get a fourth in the morning and a fifth on the drive home to complete the trip. These would be CC Peaks numbers 51 and 52 for me. Jacks Peak Jacks Peak is probably one of the easiest peaks you could ever want to find, as a road takes you into Jacks Peak Park and to within about 10 minutes of the summit. But, its (Read More)

Dec 03, 2014 - Eagle Peak (Monterey) / Ollason Peak
My Monterey work conference was set to begin Wednesday morning, and after hiking up Fremont Peak on the drive down to Monterey day two of Monterey peakbagging adventures called for me to get off to an early start in order to get back to the Conference site by the 9 AM start time. I planned on heading to Toro County Park, a large park near Salinas which was about a 15 minute drive from my hotel. The park had 2 CC peaks in it which were the objective of the day, Eagle Peak and Ollason Peak (Read More)

Dec 02, 2014 - Fremont Peak
I had a mid-week work conference to attend in Monterey, with the conference starting at 9 AM Wednesday morning and ending Thursday afternoon at 4:15. This would give me a great chance to gather up some peaks in an area further from home, although the timing of the conference wouldn't leave a lot of time to bag some peaks. With careful planning I developed an itinery which could see me round up 5 CC peaks in the area between San Jose and Monterey over the course of the 72 hours between Tuesday (Read More)

Nov 30, 2014 - Gossip Rock
The rains had certainly come early to California this year (or maybe it is simply on time but after last year it is hard to get used to all this rain). This is great news for California, but not so good for my weekend hiking. Saturday was a total washout, and with the rain continuing throughout Sunday morning it looked like I might not go out at all. Luck was on my side, however, as the skies broke after lunch, and by 1 PM I was out the door. Obviously I'm not going to go too far on a (Read More)

Nov 23, 2014 - Marsh Benchmark / Pleasanton Ridge
Saturday rains meant yet another week away from the Sierra and a chance to bag some more local peaks. I had three potential trips lined up. #1 would be a series of several short hikes to round up a bunch of easy CC peaks near Oakland, but I did not want to do this one without Kyle. #2 was a trip to Walpert Ridge and Gossip Rock, a 10 mile outing east of Sunol and south of Oakland which would give me 2 CC Peaks. #3 was two separate hikes to Pleasanton Ridge and to Marsh Benchmark, two local (Read More)

Nov 15, 2014 - Peckham Ridge / Laveaga Peak
Note: Due to the nature of the hike this trip report is general and does not provide route information. I've been spending more time going after county highpoints over the past several weeks, including those with varying degrees of access issues. But the one generally regarded as the most difficult in California (in terms of access issues) is Laveaga Peak, the highpoint of Merced County. It is isolated in the Diablo range, surrounded on all sides by miles of private ranches whose owners (Read More)

Nov 10, 2014 - Reynolds Peak / Corral Ridge
With Veterans Day falling on a Tuesday I decided to take a vacation day on Monday and head up to Ebbetts Pass for what will likely be the last time until after the winter snows melt and Highway 4 reopens. Ebbetts Pass runs through an old volcanic area of the Sierra, and offers up some of the most striking scenery of the high country, with remnant rock spires dotting the landscape. The primary goal for today was Reynolds Peak, which would be my 39th OGUL and 36th WSC peak. The day's secondary (Read More)

Nov 08, 2014 - Stakes, Mount / Black Mountain
It had been two weeks since Andrew and I had climbed Mt. Boardman. On that day he told me about the work he was doing on a Peakbagger app for the Google Play store and allowed me to join a group of climbers and hikers from around the world in testing it. The app is amazing and makes ascent tracking, peak list progress and peak research extremely easy. I had used the app to locate all of the peaks with 2,000 feet of prominence last week, which is how Kyle and I ended up on Sonoma Mountain. (Read More)

Nov 01, 2014 - Sonoma Mountains HP / Hood Mountain
The end of the hiking season in the Sierra came upon us on Halloween night, as a winter storm came rolling through California. Tahoe was under a winter storm watch through mid day Saturday, so a trip up to see the the winter scene was out of the question. That's okay though, because there are many peaks closer to home that are too hot to hike in summer but perfect for this time of year. I was perusing the list of California Peaks with over 2,000 feet of prominence, and saw that the highpoint (Read More)

Oct 26, 2014 - Mocho, Mount / Boardman, Mount / Boardman North / Mocho North (Peak 3672)
There are many different peak lists that I am currently working on, with two of those lists being the CC list and the County highpoints. Unlike the Sierra peaks, several of the CC and County peaks are either on private property or require some amount of private property travel to reach. As such, I've mostly avoided the private property peaks on these lists, especially after having a trip to Challenger Peak cut short when after 8 miles of hiking I was turned around by a landowner. Since I am (Read More)

Oct 18, 2014 - Jobs Peak / Lovers Leap
It had been 3 weeks since my snowstorm visit to Jobs Peak which resulted in my losing my GPS unit in the rocks near the summit. I had searched in vain for the device after I lost it, but without any luck. I offered a reward of $75 for its safe return, however, it was lost off trail and I knew it would be difficult for someone else to find. In the meantime I borrowed Kyle's GPS, and now that the early season snows had a chance to melt it was time to go back to Jobs and look for the missing (Read More)

Oct 12, 2014 - Donlan Point / Wiedemann Hill / Harlan Hill
Having done a lot of driving over the past couple of months, I felt like I needed a weekend off to recharge. Not a weekend off from hiking, of course, but a weekend where I could stay local and avoid the nearly 6 hour round trip up to the Sierra. Saturday morning came and I wasn't sure what I wanted to do, which resulted in my not doing anything. Saturday night I started researching potential areas to visit. I wanted something that would present a decent challenge but I had done most of (Read More)

Oct 03, 2014 - Half Dome
Unbelievably it had been a year since Kyle and I had last hiked up Half Dome. Since our visit last fall we did Clouds Rest in April, which follows much of the same route which is probably why it feels like we were just here. In fact, although this would be my 4th visit to Half Dome and Kyle's 3rd, it would be my 6th trip up the Mist Trail and through Little Yosemite Valley (Kyle's 4th). Despite having done it so much, we put in our application for a permit during the lottery period early in (Read More)

Sep 27, 2014 - Jobs Peak
In the days leading up to the last weekend of September the weather forecast was calling for an early season snowstorm in the Sierra. The storm was forecast to arrive Friday night, with snow lasting through at least mid day Sunday. With snow levels generally forecast to be around 7000+ feet, getting to the mountains would not be too much trouble via Echo Summit over Highway 50. But what to climb? I've never gone out in a snow event before, other than having a stray snow shower or two (Read More)

Sep 20, 2014 - Round Top
I was heading up to South Lake Tahoe to look at houses again which has the unfortunate consequence of cutting into potential hiking time. Knowing that I only had a half day available, I decided on a repeat of Round Top, which Kyle and I climbed last June. Round Top is a fantastic looking peak, standing tall above Highway 88 near Kirkwood, with a short approach starting on the PCT and a enjoyable class 3 scramble to the summit. I also planned on making the short traverse from Round Top over (Read More)

Sep 13, 2014 - Grant, Mount
A couple of weeks ago I received an email from a fellow hiker informing me of the Mt. Grant Memorial Challenge (www.911challenge.org), an event serving as a tribute to those who lost their lives on 9/11. Mt. Grant is the highest peak in Mineral County, Nevada and has been closed for public access following 9/11, with the exception of the annual Mt. Grant Memorial Challenge (starting in 2011). This would be a long drive for me, at 4:45, so an overnight stay would be required. I've never done (Read More)

Sep 05, 2014 - Shasta, Mount
Kyle and I were staying at the Motel 6 in Weed, having spent a few hours the day before in Lassen Volcanic National Park to acclimate for today's big hike of Mt. Shasta. And an ambitious plan it was, the objective was to dayhike the peak, requiring about 7,700 feet of elevation gain all the way up to 14,179 feet, over loose ash and talus for most of the way up. What better way to spend a day off work than this? Mt. Shasta has a lot of distinctions, such as being the fifth highest peak in (Read More)

Sep 04, 2014 - Ski Heil Peak / Eagle Peak (Lassen)
Once again I had 2 days off work, and so another road trip was in order. Kyle also had Thursday and Friday off, and we planned a trip up north to hike Mt. Shasta, about a 5 hour drive for me and 4 hours for Kyle. Mt. Shasta is a 14k peak, but stands alone as the giant of Northern California, meaning there were no good options to acclimate. I looked at the maps and saw that we could make a side trip to the Lassen Volcanic National Park and at least spend some time up around 9,000 feet. (Read More)

Aug 30, 2014 - Markleeville Peak / The Nipple
For this weekends hike Kyle and I planned a trip up to South Lake Tahoe, with the primary goal of looking at potential vacation houses and then hiking with the time that remained afterword. The plan was to look at houses for 3 hours or so, and then head on over to Markleeville Peak and The Nipple, two OGUL Peaks, with Markleeville also being a WSC Peak. Markleevile and The Nipple would be OGUL peaks number 36 and 37, and Markleeville would be WSC Peak number 33. As planned, we spent about 3 (Read More)

Aug 23, 2014 - Morgan (S), Mount
Day 3, the last day of my peakbagging vacation was here and I was ready to go out with a bang. Day 1 I climbed Mt. Hoffmann and North Peak, Day 2 was Cloudripper and Vagabond Peak, and today's objective would be Mount Morgan (South), a peak 13,748 feet in stature. There are two Mt. Morgans located only a few miles apart, which is why the (South) designation is used, so as to not confuse the two peaks which are so close together. In researching the peak I noted that a secondary peak, 12 Flags (Read More)

Aug 22, 2014 - Vagabond Peak / Cloudripper
Today was day 2 of my 3 day peakbagging trip, having summited Mt. Hoffmann and North Peak yesterday I was ready for some more fun, this time in the eastern Sierra. I awoke at the Motel 6 in Mammoth Lakes at 7 AM (I know, that is pretty lazy) and still unsure about what I actually wanted to hike. I have very little experience with hiking multiple days in a row, and I wanted to stick with something that would be tough but not epic, since I still wanted to hike more tomorrow. I decided on (Read More)

Aug 21, 2014 - Hoffmann, Mount / North Peak
I had Thursday and Friday off work, and was excited to take my first trip to the eastern Sierra in over a year. Most of the time I like to make the full round trip drive and hike in a long day, which makes the eastern Sierra, with its 5-6 hour drive, off limits. Unless I have time off work that is, when I can spend a couple nights at a motel and spend my days bagging peaks instead of driving. Thursday morning I took the dogs out for a walk, and left my house at around 8 AM. I had programmed (Read More)

Aug 16, 2014 - Thunder Mountain East / Thunder Mountain West
I spent the night at the Toiyabe Motel in Coleville, which was a great little find kind of in the middle of nowhere. Today I would head back home, but not before doing a little more hiking. I had gone to bed with a plan of going towards Lost Cannon Peak. This would require a trip along a dirt road through the Mountain Warfare Training Center, a place I had previously visited but had turned around when the road got a bit too iffy. At some point overnight I had a change of mind, and decided (Read More)

Aug 15, 2014 - Bull Run Peak / Henry Peak / Peep Sight Peak / Lookout Peak
I had a big weekend planned, brought on by my hitting my vacation accrual cap at work which required that I take 3 days off in August and 2 days off in September (meaning many more great trips to come!!!). I don't usually spend nights away from home, instead making the long round trip drives and hikes within a single day. But with extra days off work, I didn't mind spending some time on the road. I had Friday off work, and the plan was to spend a couple of relatively easy days hiking in the (Read More)

Aug 10, 2014 - Spikes Peak
I needed a break from the weekly long drive up to the Sierra, but didn't really want to take a break from hiking. August isn't normally the best time to go hiking anywhere under 8,000 feet (unless its by the ocean) but some sort of monsoonal flow had been keeping temperatures down with afternoon clouds making for decent outdoor conditions. I've been working on many peak lists, the least impressive of which is the Coastal California (CC) list. I looked at the maps and saw that there was a CC (Read More)

Aug 02, 2014 - Dicks Peak / Jacks Peak
On our last outing to Sierra a couple of weeks ago Kyle and I talked about potentially looking for a place up in the high country which would serve as a vacation home/hiking base for us since we make the 2.5 - 3 hour trips up to Tahoe on such a regular basis. Since then I started looking around, setting up Zillow and Redfin alerts to keep me posted on what was available and to give me an idea of what the selection and price range was looking like. We both wanted to look around, which meant we (Read More)

Jul 26, 2014 - Old Man Mountain / Lola, Mount (North) / Lola, Mount
I've had Old Man Mountain near the top of my to-do list for a while, having failed in a previous attempt with Kyle when we missed our turnoff and wound up bagging Signal Peak for a second time instead. The approach from Hwy 80 is not pleasant, following a off road vehicle road for several miles. Memories of the many jeeps and dust clouds that followed still haunt me. So when my hiking buddy Jerry let me know of an easier way to summit Old Man I was interested. It turns out that Old Man can (Read More)

Jul 19, 2014 - Red Peak (Desoloation Wilderness) / Silver Peak (Desolation Wilderness) / McConnell Peak / Tells Peak
For this weekends hike Kyle and I planned a traverse of 4 OGUL peaks in the Sierra, about 10 miles west of Lake Tahoe. We knew the traverse was possible after seeing a trip report from Bob Burd where he and Matthew Holliman had done the same traverse a few years ago. A summit of these four peaks (Red, Silver, McConnell and Tells) would boost my OGUL peak count up to 30, nearly halfway complete on the list of 63. We met up at the Target in Rancho Cordova and took Hwy 50 to Icehouse Road, (Read More)

Jul 12, 2014 - Vogelsang Peak / Parsons Peak Ridge / Parsons Peak
Following the less than monumental hike of Rubicon Peak last weekend, I made big plans for this weekends hike. With Kyle busy this weekend I was on my own, which is when I like to head further south. Last year I had noticed Vogelsang Peak, a mid 11 thousand foot peak in Yosemite that is about 8 miles from the nearest trailhead. I thought it was a bit ambitious at the time, having not realized that there is a trail that takes you basically to the base of the peak. That, and the total (Read More)

Jul 05, 2014 - Rubicon Peak
With scorching heat predicted for most of California, Kyle and I planned on heading up to the high country for some summer hiking. We originally talked about doing a Reynolds/Raymond traverse, but decided to save that for a time with cooler weather. We also talked about a Dicks/Jacks traverse as well was a Silver/Tells/Red/McConnell 4 peak traverse, but our mental scars from the heat on our Junipero Serra hike a month ago made us opt for a cautious destination. We decided on a roundup of (Read More)

Jun 28, 2014 - Disaster Peak / Arnot Peak
I hadn't been able to get to the Sierra for over a month, instead going to Monterey one weekend, and spending other days chasing local CC peaks and peaks that work brought me an opportunity to climb. Then last weekend my mom came to visit (I'm not complaining!) so hiking was not on the agenda during her visit. Things would get back to normal now, however, as my hiking buddy Jerry and I had talked about doing something, as he was anxious to hit the trail after a vacation in Hawaii. We have (Read More)

Jun 16, 2014 - Cobb Mountain / Cobb Mountain West Rim
Once again my work had me on the road for a day, this time sending me up to Santa Rosa for a visit at Gigabit fiber internet service provider Sonic.net. I planned to take advantage of my trip up north by visiting Cobb Mountain after concluding with Sonic.net, which confusingly has the highest point in the Bay Area (and thus the high point of Sonoma County), although the summit itself is actually in Lake County and is not the high point of that county. Make sense? In other words, I would (Read More)

Jun 14, 2014 - Maguire Peaks
Today would be a quick hike, more of a weekend off interrupted by a 2 hour hike up Maguire Peaks, a CC listed summit that is quite prominent when viewed heading south on 680 after leaving Pleasanton. Kyle had told me that his wife wanted to hike Mission Peak, and so I decided that I could get Maguire Peaks first then meet them at the TH for Mission Peak afterword. Maguire Peaks is a bit off the beaten path, and requires a 2 mile drive along the single lane Welch Road to arrive at one of the (Read More)

Jun 07, 2014 - Junipero Serra Peak
I've had my eye on Junipero Serra Peak now for quite some time, mainly because at over 5,800 feet it is the high point of Monterey County. It is also on the CC list, meaning a successful ascent would net me my 12th county highpoint and 35th CC peak. Being that the peak is in Monterey County one might think that it would offer pleasant summer weather conditions and views of the Pacific Ocean. One would be wrong on both counts. The peak lies to the east of the 5,000+ ft Cone Peak, blocking (Read More)

May 24, 2014 - Ellis Peak
The end of May meant we had some odd conditions in the Sierra. Not enough snow to go snowshoeing, but enough at the higher elevations to still make travel a bit challenging. Earlier in the season we would simply plan on a shorter distance hike to allow for slow travel in snow, and in summer we could feel confident no matter what the distance. But now we were in the middle, and so I decided to suggest 2 OGUL peaks of moderate height where I felt like we would be off snow most of the way but (Read More)

May 20, 2014 - Berryessa Peak
I had an 8 AM meeting in Sacramento that I had to attend on a Tuesday morning, providing me with a rare opportunity to get in a weekday hike. I've previously used opportunities to hike some new areas in conjunction with work travel - a couple of hikes in SoCal being the most memorable, and for today I put in for the rest of the day off after my Sacramento work was done. I intended to head up to the Sierra, but a late spring storm ruined that plan and instead I decided to head west out of (Read More)

May 17, 2014 - Wittenberg, Mount / Barnabe Mountain / Pine Mountain
I called Kyle Friday evening to see if he wanted to go somewhere Saturday, which he did, but neither one of us was too keen on driving all the way up to the Sierra. I left the decision on where to go for him to decide. Using Bob Burd's website he was able to zero in a trio of CC listed peaks in Marin County. The peaks were not close enough to do in one single hike, so we planned on doing 3 smaller hikes, thinking we would do about 15 miles on the day. These three peaks, Mt. Whittenberg, (Read More)

May 10, 2014 - Bull Run Peak
You win some and you lose some. That's not entirely accurate as on this day I think I did both, resulting a one of my more memorable days in the mountains. The day started off in fine fashion, as I took advantage of the nice weather to walk my dogs together in the park. They had tons of fun looking for squirrels although I think they wound up chasing each other more than anything else. After the morning festivities I set off for the mountains, hoping to get some snowshoeing in before it (Read More)

May 03, 2014 - Tallac, Mount
It was exactly 4 months ago that Kyle and I suffered our most dubious outing, first aiming for Mt. Tallac but finding the access road closed, then going after a few other peaks and being denied on all of those for various reasons which included me getting a speeding ticket and Kyle having to get out of the car to guide it down an icy section of a road when I lost steering control. The sadistically inclined can read about that unfortunate series of events at (Read More)

Apr 26, 2014 - Sunol Peak
Today was to be an easy hike after many weeks of difficult hiking. I was determined to stay local and settled on hiking up what amounts to a paved road up to the top of Sunol Peak in the East Bay. Sunol Peak is a CC listed peak, and as such was on my eventual to-do list. I've long resisted doing such easy peaks, but given that the choice was between doing nothing and doing this peak the choice was easy. Besides, if I ever hope to make any headway on my list of climbed CC peaks I'm going to (Read More)

Apr 20, 2014 - Yosemite Falls / Eagle Peak (Yosemite) / El Capitan
After hiking Clouds Rest from Yosemite Valley the weekend before, I was reminded of the majesty of Yosemite and was anxious to come back for more. I've backed off from going after new peaks on the peak lists of late, having done several repeat ascents of late. Today's hike would not be a repeat, but instead were first time ascents of peaks that are not on any of the peak lists that I've been working on. That doesn't necessarily make them any less worthwhile, as today's hike would take me to (Read More)

Apr 12, 2014 - Clouds Rest
Over the past few years I have found a few peaks that are so memorable that they go on the list to be visited on a regular basis. Mt. Whitney, Half Dome, Devils Peak and Pyramid Peak come to mind, but one such peak way up on my list is Clouds Rest. I've been to Clouds Rest twice before, via different routes and conditions. The first time was a couple of years ago with Kyle, and we did it as a fairly easy summer hike from Tioga Road. While a fun trip, the lack of a significant challenge and (Read More)

Apr 06, 2014 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit
I have spent more time hiking Mt. Diablo than any other peak. In fact, my very first hike was on Diablo in October 2010, and I summited 18 times before I set foot on my first Sierra hike on Half Dome in July 2012. Soon after that I discovered the Sierra peak lists, and my focus shifted from local peaks to the high peaks of the Sierra. I hadn't abandoned my home mountain, however, and summitted it 6 more times between July 2012 and October 2013, giving me a total of 24 summits. But in the 6 (Read More)

Mar 30, 2014 - Rocky Ridge / Ramage Peak
While winter never really arrived in California, the onset of spring has brought some much needed rain, finally turning the hillsides green and dropping snow into the Sierra. I'm not sure my Sierra season every really stopped this year, but with the unsettled weather calling for rain on Saturday I was not really sure I was going to do anything this weekend. Not having any plans, opportunity arose when my hiking buddy Jerry, who was with me when we were kicked off the private land around (Read More)

Mar 22, 2014 - Snow Mountain / Devil's Peak
My favorite peak so far is Devils Peak, which is only a few miles from Highway 80 and has nicely graded, packed trails which make for excellent snowshoeing conditions. The peak itself provides for a fun 150 feet of vertical class 3 climbing, followed by a knife-edge ridgeline traverse. It's just a lot of fun to go climb that thing. I'd visited this area several times in the past, having climbed Devils Peak three times and once combining it with the much more distant Snow Mountain, which is (Read More)

Mar 15, 2014 - Discovery Peak / Rose Peak
When I first started hiking a few years ago I was unaware of the various peak lists that give hikers a fantastic "to-do" list. Having learned about these lists after discovering Bob Burd's incredibly informative and entertaining website at www.snwburd.com (from which I borrowed heavily in the design of this website), I started working on the OGUL, WSC, SPS, CC and county high point lists. As a result of not knowing about the peak lists for about a year of my hiking, many of my early hikes (Read More)

Mar 08, 2014 - Pyramid Peak
One of my favorite climbs was a winter ascent of Pyramid Peak last winter - my first real winter climb of a significant peak. Pyramid Peak is a no-nonsense uphill climb, rising over 4,000 feet in about 4 miles, making it the largest elevation gain for any peak in the Lake Tahoe area. Pyramid is the highpoint of the Desolation Wilderness and listed on the SPS, WSC and OGUL Peak lists. Although I had done Pyramid last winter, Kyle had yet to climb it as we ran out of time before we could (Read More)

Mar 01, 2014 - Black Mountain / Borel Hill / Windy Hill
With the rains finally coming to California my options were quite limited for a weekend hike. Going the Sierra was out of the question, and even local hiking carried the threat of misery if a downpour were to catch me. Saturday was forecast to be the rainier of the two weekend days, and after getting barely any rain that day, I decided Sunday was looking good, but to be safe I decided to go after some easy summits that would help me along in my peak lists. Today's primary target would be (Read More)

Feb 21, 2014 - Miller Peak / San Jacinto Peak / Jean Peak
I was in Southern California for a work conference, and after hiking up Mt. Baldy on Tuesday I was excited for the end of the conference Friday morning which would give me another hiking opportunity before making the 6 1/2 hour drive back from Palm Springs to Tracy. There really was no question as to what I would hike - Palm Springs is well known for its tram which heads up to about 8,400 feet on the 10,800 foot San Jacinto Peak, the high point of Riverside County. I admit to having more than (Read More)

Feb 18, 2014 - San Antonio (Baldy), Mount / West Baldy / Harwood, Mount
I'd been looking forward to the annual work conference that I attend each year for months, as this years conference was in Palm Springs. Actually, I couldn't care less that it was in Palm Springs, I wouldn't have cared if it were in Rancho Cucamonga instead - what I was excited about was having the opportunity to hike for the first time southern California and to get a City of Los Angeles library card. In the days leading up to the trip I was still uncertain as to my itinerary. The (Read More)

Feb 15, 2014 - Black Buttes
Over the past couple of weeks we finally started getting the rains and mountain snowfall that should have been here at least two months prior, and with the forecast calling for a chance of late afternoon snowfall in the Sierra I was quite hesitant about heading up and risking getting stuck driving back in a snowstorm. This was a bit of a letdown, as Kyle and I had previously discussed doing something difficult since it was a 3 day weekend and so we wouldn't mind a longer day on the trail. I (Read More)

Feb 09, 2014 - El Sombroso
Winter finally arrived to Northern California by early February, with the forecast calling for mountain snow and Bay Area rain for the entire weekend. I had considered hiking somewhere local on Saturday, as is my preferred hiking day, but decided against it thinking that the wet weather would result in some less than fun conditions. Well, the rain was intermittent at best, and so come Sunday morning I decided that I had no excuse for not braving the misty conditions and bagging another peak. (Read More)

Feb 01, 2014 - Sizer, Mount
As February rolled in, I began to realize that I hadn't been doing as much local hiking as I normally would during the winter months, and while going to the Sierra in winter is a rare treat, the fact remains that summer is prime Sierra time while the hot summers restrict my access to the local peaks. Basically, if I plan to get any Bay Area vicinity peaks, I needed to get started. Although I am working on the CC (California Coastal) Peak list, a hiking buddy told me about the "Everest by the (Read More)

Jan 18, 2014 - Hawkins Peak / Pickett Peak
With no end in sight for the deepening California drought, the peaks in the northern Sierra have remained accessible for winter ascents, even as the calendar has reached the mid point of January. While I prefer we receive some much needed rain and snow, I might as well take advantage of this rare opportunity to add to my peak lists during the middle of winter. Today's primary objective would be Hawkins Peak, a peak rising to just over 10,000 feet south of Lake Tahoe which is on both the WSC (Read More)

Jan 11, 2014 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak
I had just completed my first week back at work following my 18 day vacation (not that I was counting or anything) during which I also was extremely active on the hiking trails, going on 4 trips and picking up 7 new summits during that vacation. As my first work week wound down, I had thought that I may be adopting a third dog and would need to stay home all weekend to see how everyone got along but at the last minute the dog visit was postponed until February leaving me with no real plans for (Read More)

Jan 03, 2014 - Waterhouse Peak / Eagle Falls Trail
Somehow my two week vacation was already winding down, and it was time for my 4th and final hiking trip. For this trip Kyle would be joining me on another outing to the Sierra. The lack of snow in the mountains, although becoming a big concern for the welfare of California, would provide us with a small benefit in that we believed we would easier access to the higher peaks. Our goal for the day was originally Mt. Tallac, a fantastic peak overlooking Lake Tahoe which is on the SPS, WSC and (Read More)

Dec 30, 2013 - Loma Prieta / Knibbs Knob
Now halfway through my 2 week vacation, it was time for my 3rd hiking trip. Today's outing would be a visit to Loma Prieta with a side trip to Knibbs Knob. Both peaks are on the CC list, and would be my 22nd and 23rd summits on that list. Loma Prieta is most famously knows as the location of the massive 1989 Bay Area Earthquake that occurred during the Oakland/SF World Series, although among peakbaggers it is also well known as the highpoint of the Santa Cruz mountains. To get to the (Read More)

Dec 25, 2013 - Red Lake Peak / Stevens Peak
My 2 week Christmas vacation was in full swing, and my plan to go on 4 hiking trips during this time called for a mid-week visit to the Sierra to keep things on track. This year I didn't have any plans for Christmas, and so that seemed like a great day to plan my trip. With the date selected, all that was left was the location. I had very recently discovered (I don't recall why I ever thought otherwise) that Highway 88 stays open year-round, the third of the Trans-Sierra highways that does (Read More)

Dec 21, 2013 - North Chalone Peak / South Chalone Peak
I was in high spirits by the time the weekend of December 21 came around - largely because I was just starting a 2 week vacation from work, and I planned on making good use of the time and going on 4 hiking trips during this time off. The only thing that could derail me would be the lingering effects of the bruised toenail that I suffered on my previous hike to Ralston Peak the previous weekend. It had been drained by the doctor on Monday, and although still a touch sore I felt pretty (Read More)

Dec 14, 2013 - Ralston Peak
December was halfway over, and the Sierra had only seen a couple of snow events, and nothing of note since November. Instead of winter storms, the forecast called for sunny skies and temperatures above freezing for the high country. Kyle and I had visited Castle Peak and Basin Peaks the weekend prior to Thanksgiving and had elected to do the trip without snowshoes, although there were sections of that hike where snowshoes would have certainly helped. We really wanted to do a snowshoe trek, (Read More)

Dec 09, 2013 - Briones Peak / Mott Peak
There are many peak lists that I am currently working on, with each list of varying difficulty. The list with the easiest peaks is the California Coastal Peaks List, a collection of approximately 300 peaks in the mountains west of the Sierra. I am currently working on this "CC" list as a long-term objective, however, the dubious nature of some of the peaks simply do not merit (at least not yet) a dedicated trip just to climb one. I had climbed 18 of the CC peaks (primarily by accident as I (Read More)

Nov 23, 2013 - Castle Peak / Basin Peak
The weekend before Thanksgiving finally offered some real winter climbing conditions, with the first significant snowfall of the year having fallen in the days prior. Last winter season was a learning experience for me, as I started the season with a failed attempt on Pyramid Peak where I naively attempted the summit without so much as snowshoes. By the end of the season, I had managed a few winter summits and had all the necessary gear to start this winter season off right. Kyle did not (Read More)

Nov 16, 2013 - White Mountain
Although we are halfway through November, all of the trans-Sierra highways were still open, with only a few minor snow events having so far made their way through the high country. I hadn't planned on having access to the peaks south of Highway 50 this late in the year, but I certainly wasn't going to let a late season opportunity to visit the high Sierra pass me by. Adding to my desire to head to the higher peaks further south was the fact that I was flying solo for the day, and the southern (Read More)

Nov 09, 2013 - Signal Peak
This weekend Kyle and I were looking to summit a challenging OGUL Peak before the winter snows restricted our targets to those within a few miles of the plowed highways. Today we were looking to attempt Old Man Mountain, a peak which requiress a 7.5 mile hike just to reach the base of the mountain if you don't have a 4x4 vehicle. The trail (actually it is a road for off-road vehicles) can be driven to within about a mile of Old Man Mountain for those with proper transportation. (Read More)

Oct 26, 2013 - Freel Peak / Jobs Sister
Today was to be a bit of a celebratory occasion, as I only needed 2 more Tahoe OGUL peaks to earn consideration for the OGUL Peak Emblem Status. Aside from a stray minor storm or two, winter weather had yet to take any kind of hold in the high county, and Kyle and I decided it would be a great opportunity to visit Freel Peak - a peak listed on the SPS, WSC and OGUL Peak lists, and, along with being the highpoint of El Dorado County at 10,881 feet, is also the the highest peak in the Tahoe (Read More)

Oct 19, 2013 - Gibbs, Mount
Today's agenda called for a Saturday half-day hike up to the summit of Mt. Gibbs, on the far eastern border of Yosemite but within a very short distance of Highway 120. A successful summit of Mt. Gibbs would give me my 16th Sierra Peaks Section ascent and my 20th from the Western States Climbers list. For several weeks Yosemite had been off limits due to the Federal Government shutdown, when hiking would have been some sort of Federal crime or something. I left home around 10:15 AM, really (Read More)

Oct 12, 2013 - Granite Chief / Needle Peak / Lyon Peak
For this weekend's hike Kyle and I expanded our acceptable driving distance and turned our attention towards Squaw Valley, the site of the 1960 Winter Olympic Games and just short of a 3 hour drive from my house to the Olympic Village just north of Lake Tahoe. We met up at the Fry's in Roseville and arrived at the Squaw Valley Resort at 10:30. The day's objectives included a trio of OGUL and WSC peaks in Granite Chief, Needle Peak and Lyon Peak (with Granite Chief also an SPS listed peak). (Read More)

Oct 06, 2013 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Devil's Pulpit
2 weeks had passed since Kyle and I had summited Half Dome, enough time to get me a little stir-crazy to get out again and do something. I wasn't feeling like I wanted to drive the 5-6 hour round trip up and down to the high Sierra, and with the weather still warm there was little that I could do in the immediate area which wouldn't turn into a tiring slog. Indecision won out on Saturday, and I wound up going nowhere. As night fell on Saturday I decided that I would get up extremely early (Read More)

Sep 21, 2013 - Half Dome
One of the most enjoyable aspects of hiking in the Sierra is the expanse of wide open spaces where you can spend a day in the wilderness enjoying spectacular views as you work your way up to the top of a challenging peak. These trips typically involve 6-8 hours on and off the trail while running into one or two people the entire day. Despite my preference for the solitude on the trail, there are some hikes which are so amazing that I don't mind if I have to share the day with people around (Read More)

Sep 14, 2013 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak
Having thoroughly enjoyed my evening hike of Mission Peak/Mt. Allison/Monument Peak the weekend before I came back for a repeat journey. Kyle and I planned on hiking Half Dome the following weekend, so I didn't really want to do anything that would take me away from home for too long or would be too difficult knowing that Half Dome is a pretty good challenge that I wanted to be well rested for. I came out a bit earlier for this visit - starting about 20 minutes earlier as I wanted to be on (Read More)

Sep 07, 2013 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak
Over the past several months I've been pleasantly surprised that soreness and muscle fatigue following hikes is essentially gone within a couple of days, and I no longer have any adverse reactions to hiking multiple weekends in a row, or doing stretches of 3 hikes in 4 weeks. Such ambitious activity resulted in all sorts of knee problems for me not too long after I first started hiking, mostly in the spring and summer of 2011. Unless I am doing an extraordinarily difficult hike, I now have (Read More)

Sep 01, 2013 - Anderson Peak / Tinker Knob
Kyle and I had planned on hiking something on this first day of September, however we were a bit wary of the Rim fire near Yosemite and the impacts that the smoke might have on our plans. The Rim fire, one of the largest and costliest in California history, was throwing off a massive smoke plume which was being blown about in different directions on a daily basis, depending upon the prevailing winds. Since we couldn't adjust our hiking date (a little thing called work gets in the way), we (Read More)

Aug 25, 2013 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit
As the dog days of summer begin to give way to the cooler days of autumn, I found myself a little burned out on driving the 6 hours round trip to visit peaks in the Sierra. On the positive side, there are good hiking opportunities in my general vicinity, with Mt. Diablo and Mission Peak. Unfortunately, as far as peak bagging goes, there is little else worthwhile. I've been to Mt. Diablo almost too many times to count, something like 20 times so there is little left for me to discover in when (Read More)

Aug 18, 2013 - Mission Peak
Following my aborted attempt at White Mountain on Saturday, I decided I needed to accomplish something Sunday but didn't really feel like spending any more time on the road. The perfect cure for this dilemma is Mission Peak, an extremely popular peak east of Fremont and about a 45 minute drive from my house. Being that this part of the Bay Area gets really hot during the summer I hadn't been to Mission Peak in several months, although it has always been a fun little climb the other seasons of (Read More)

Aug 17, 2013 - Sonora Pass
Two weeks following the last outing to Mt. Price and Mt. Agassiz, I set out looking for the next Sierra adventure. Today's destination was a trip up Highway 108, with a goal of White Mountain and one of its surrounding peaks to make for a challenging and worthwhile day. In doing my pre-hike research, I learned that there were two trailheads offering access to White Mountain. One was right at the top of Sonora Pass, but required a longer hike to get to the mountain, and the other was accessed (Read More)

Aug 03, 2013 - Price, Mount / Agassiz, Mount
Kyle and I had not been on a hiking trip since out visit to Mt. Whitney over a month prior, and with our Mom getting married the following weekend out in South Carolina we knew if we didn't do something it would likely be a few more weeks before we could find the time again. We have deveoloped a somewhat informal routine - when I go by myself I head for peaks further south and when we go together we look for mountains in proximity to Highways 80 or 50 since those are easily accessable for (Read More)

Jul 28, 2013 - Highland Peak
Things have been pretty slow since the Whitney hike at the end of July, with my only outing being an aborted attempt on Highland Peak two weeks earlier. Anytime I have failed to summit a peak it automatically retains its spot right on the top of my to-do list. Highland Peak is by no means easy, requiring several miles of hiking just to reach the point where the cross country work and steep slopes begin. Adding to the challenge is the rugged volcanic landscape of the area, littered with (Read More)

Jul 14, 2013 - Noble Canyon
I had taken a couple of weekends off after the Mt. Whitney hike but was anxious to get back into the swing of things. I have had a long-term goal of completing enough summits to earn "emblem status" on the climbing lists I have been working on. Those lists are the Sierra Peaks Section (SPS), Western States Climbers (WSC) and OGUL (Tahoe Region). To get emblem status one must summit a varying amount of peaks, with a certain number of them being listed as emblem peaks which are reserved for (Read More)

Jun 28, 2013 - Whitney, Mount / Muir, Mount
After summiting Tioga Peak on Wednesday and acclimating at Horseshoe Meadows on Thursday, Kyle and I were ready for the Mt. Whitney dayhike Friday. Despite knowing we had something like 15 hours of daylight available to us, we both wanted to get off to an early start in order to allow ourselves enough time to drive back home following the hike. We were staying at the Courthouse Motel in Independence, about a 35 minute drive from the Whitney Portal starting point for the hike. We set the (Read More)

Jun 27, 2013 - Horseshoe Meadows
...after spending the night at Motel 6 in Mammoth Lakes Kyle and I hit the road by 8 AM to first pick up our permits at the Ranger Station in Lone Pine, where a fine view of the Mt. Whitney crest was offered. We arrived at about 10 AM and picked up our permits and took note of the extreme weather conditions forecast for the area. Thankfully we would be facing temperatures in the low 70's up at 10,000 feet instead of the 98 in Lone Pine or 120 in Furnace Creek. Permit in hand, we left the (Read More)

Jun 26, 2013 - Tioga Peak
The time had come for Kyle and I to set off for Mt. Whitney and a busy 2 1/2 days of travel and hiking. Our plan was to leave my house Wednesday around noon, stop in Yosemite to do an acclimatization hike, then continue on to our hotel in Mammoth Lakes where we would sleep over the 7,000 foot elevation level. Thursday we would pick up our permits and spend some time over 10,000 feet and Friday we would get up early, hike Mt. Whitney and then drive back to my house Friday night. We had not (Read More)

Jun 22, 2013 - Round Top / Elephants Back
Kyle and I were in need of some acclimatization before our trip to Mt. Whitney in 6 days so we decided to head off for the Sierra in search of something to climb. Much like my trip to Leavitt Peak last week, we needed to find something that would require no more than a half day's effort, gave us some elevation, and was on one of the climbing lists that I have been working on. Round Top fit this bill perfectly, an SPS, WSC and OGUL summit of nearly 10,400 feet and only about 4.5 miles off of (Read More)

Jun 15, 2013 - Leavitt Peak
With the trip to Mt. Whitney only 2 weeks away, I wanted to get a jump on the acclimatization process but didn't want to do anything too difficult. This called for finding a trailhead at high elevation with a peak that could be climbed with no more than a half day's effort, but also that was on one of the Sierra peaks lists so I could continue my progress with those. I decided upon Leavitt Peak, an SPS and WSC listed peak located off HWY 108 at Sonora Pass. I didn't leave the house until (Read More)

Jun 05, 2013 - Rose Hill
Rose Hill was another peak that I had not yet visited, and although it isn't too far away, I was unlikely to visit since it only requires a 2.5 mile round trip hike. I had been near Rose Hill before, as Kyle and I had hiked the Black Diamond Mines park that Rose Hill is part of. But at that time I had not yet heard of the CC Peak list and was unaware that this was the only listed peak in the area. Had I known that I certainly would have visited at that time. As was the case with Mt. (Read More)

Jun 04, 2013 - Davidson, Mount
In addition to focusing on climbing peaks on the Sierra peaks lists, I also have a long term goal of climbing the highest peaks in each California county. Some of these peaks are not exactly worthy of giving up a day better spent climbing more worthy objectives, and so it will probably be a long time before I get to even half of them. Case in point, I had yet to visit the San Francisco County highpoint, largely because I did not want to drive the round trip 3 hours it would take to accomplish (Read More)

Jun 01, 2013 - Signal Peak
With only one month to go until our big hike to Mt. Whitney, Kyle and I decided we needed to start getting in some Sierra hiking as we need to start acclimating to the thinner air. After looking at some maps of OGUL peaks we decided to try either a combination of Signal Peak and Old Man Mountain or Black Butte and Old Man Mountain. The combination with Signal Peak would be about 16 miles while the Black Butte trip would have been closer to 20 miles. After I took my dogs on their morning 5 (Read More)

May 25, 2013 - Snow Mountain / Devil's Peak
Memorial Day weekend marks the time when local hiking becomes much more difficult with the summer heat sapping any enjoyment from being on the trail. At the same time, the high Sierra is still snow-covered, so I woke on on Saturday not really knowing where I was going to go. I figured I would get up early, walk the dogs and see if any urges hit me. On that walk I got the urge to finally claim Snow Mountain, which had eluded me multiple times during the winter months. Snow Mountain is not (Read More)

May 18, 2013 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)
The very first hike I ever took, back in October 2010 was to Mt. Diablo. During the next year I spent somewhere around half my hiking time here, as the proximity to my house, the fantastic views, and eventually the familiarity of the mountain kept me coming back for more. In 2012 I discovered the fun of the Sierra, which served as a welcomed reprieve from the hot summer Diablo months but also introduced me to more hiking styles, such as cross country, bouldering, and scrambling. I spent a (Read More)

May 05, 2013 - Discovery Peak / Rose Peak
The Ohlone Trail covers the 28 miles between Lake Del Valle in south Livermore and Fremont. The trail cuts through a large swath of the Ohlone Wilderness, an area devoid of development and highlighted by rugged terrain. I completed the Ohlone Trail back in May 2011 which resulted in severe knee pain which took me several months to recover from. I had only been hiking for 6 months when I attempted the hike and obviously I had taken on too much too soon. This time, with two more years of (Read More)

Apr 27, 2013 - Donner Peak / Judah, Mount / Lincoln, Mount
For a few weeks Kyle and I have talked about dayhiking the full Ohlone Trail - a 29 mile march that includes over 7,000 feet of elevation gain and loss. Unfortunately (or fortunately for the sane) we have been hit with quite a spell of warm weather, and mid 80's temperatures were enough to scare us from the heat of lowlands and off to pursuits in the Sierra. Kyle still doesn't have snowshoes, so I looked around for something that would be likely to offer nothing more than moderate snow . I (Read More)

Apr 13, 2013 - Clouds Rest
With Tioga Road (providing access to the higher peaks) still closed for the winter and the Half Dome cables still down I hadn't been to Yosemite in nearly six months. In fact I hadn't even been out on a hike of any sort for 4 weeks, as 2 weekends of fantasy baseball drafts and 1 weekend at my Dad's had left me aching to get out and do something really challenging. I came up with the idea of climbing Clouds Rest, topping out at 9,926 feet. I summited Clouds Rest last year, but that was from (Read More)

Mar 16, 2013 - Devil's Peak
Devil's Peak has become my de-facto "go-to" location when I am craving a winter climb. With the success I had in February when I didn't even have to use my snowshoes at all (thanks to the quality of the trails that the Royal Gorge maintains for their cross country skiers) I invited Kyle along to attempt his first winter climb. He doesn't have any winter gear, so our success would have to largely depend on the continued quality of the trails. For this trip we met up at the Fry's Electronics in (Read More)

Mar 02, 2013 - Pyramid Peak
Having completed my first winter summit on Devil's Peak a couple of weeks ago, I felt ready to avenge my prior defeat on Pyramid Peak from last October, when the unexpected deep snow highlighted just how unprepared I was for winter conditions in the Sierra. This time I would come armed with snowshoes, crampons, gloves, an extra jacket and a balaclava. Pyramid Peak is a prominent Peak in the Lake Tahoe area - it is the highest point, at 9,983 in the Desolation Wilderness and its prominence has (Read More)

Feb 17, 2013 - Devil's Peak
I've made three visits to the Sierra since the first snowfall in October and have left each time without a summit (unless you count my consolation summit of Carpenter Hill on my drive back from Pyramid Peak, and I don't). I attribute this lack of summit success to going in less than ideal conditions - my previous visits were after heavy snows which made the trek to the peaks very time consuming and difficult. My last trip saw me moving at a pace of about 1 MPH, which is just too slow and too (Read More)

Feb 09, 2013 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Black Point
It had been several months since I had done a really challenging hike, and in trying to come up with something worthwhile I remembered Kyle's idea to try to summit, in one day, all 6 of the summits in Mt. Diablo State Park that are included in the "California Coastal Peaks" list. There are 13 such peaks in Contra Costa County, with 6 of the top 7 peaks by elevation found in the Park. I've been to all 6 of these peaks before, but have never taken down all 6 in one outing. I always take (Read More)

Jan 20, 2013 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak
Having largely run out of challenging hikes in the Bay Area, Kyle and I decided to try the Mission Peak/Mt. Allison/Monument Peak trio but from the east side, coming up from the Sunol Visitor Center rather than coming up from the western side in Fremont. I've been to Mission Peak several times, but the only time I came up from this side was when I did the full Ohlone Trail nearly two years ago. We met up around 9:40 at the Sunol Visitor Center and set off on our hike, not really expecting (Read More)

Jan 13, 2013 - Black Point
I'd been out hiking a lot more than usual over the past several weeks, and while I don't usually strive for the most challenging hikes, I was ready for a break. My brother Kyle's wife Nina has recently become more focused on fitness and exercise, and she had mentioned to him here desire to hike with him sometime, but wasn't interested in going on a joint trip with both of us for fear of slowing us down. Since I wasn't planning on doing any hiking on this weekend, thought it might be a good (Read More)

Jan 05, 2013 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak
With the first workweek of the new year done I got the urge Friday to celebrate with some hiking. But the big question lately always seems to be "Where?" I've been to all of the local spots and I'm torn between visiting as many county high points and prominent peaks as possible while at the same time not wanting to spend hours of my day driving. I also want to make sure my hikes are hard enough to keep me in good hiking shape for when the Sierra opens back up for hiking. So the night before (Read More)

Dec 30, 2012 - Saint Helena, Mount / Saint Helena East, Mount
Following the difficult conditions in the Sierra that forced me to turn around without accomplishing anything only 2 days prior, Kyle and I decided to go after the Napa County highpoint which I had missed out on by about 40 feet 13 months earlier. The Napa County highpoint is a small subsidiary peak about a quarter mile from the main summit of Mt. St. Helena. Since the main summit is actually in Sonoma County (with the higher Cobb Mountain claiming the title of Sonoma County highpoint), (Read More)

Dec 28, 2012 - Tahoe National Forest
Having had two consecutive failures in snowy conditions in the Sierra I set out on a return trip to try for Devil's Peak in the Sierra National Forest. There had been a lot of winter weather over the preceding week and reports from Yosemite were that 50 inches of snow was now on the ground. My last trip failed only because I had attempted to reach the trailhead in less than ideal conditions, so this time I waited for 2 straight days of sun and then set off. It was very cold when I arrived at (Read More)

Dec 18, 2012 - Tahoe National Forest
With two weeks off from work I figured it was prime time to try out my new winter gear I've been accumulating over the past two months. New showshoes, ice axe, backpack and winter clothing all ready to be broken in. I have yet to summit anything in snowy weather, having been turned around on Pyramid Peak last month as the deep snow was too much for me armed with only hiking boots. The plan was to leave the house by 5:30 which would put me at the trailhead for Snow Mountain and Devil's Peak (Read More)

Dec 01, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)
With winter now in full force I have largely resigned myself to local hikes, leaving the Sierra behind until better weather comes in the spring. I hadn't been to Mt. Diablo in a while and Diablo was the scene of my first hike, and has become my fallback for when I need to get out and do a hike and haven't found anywhere else to go. It is tough, and I always see something new and feel a sense of accomplishment after completing the 4 summits. For today, the four peak loop was coming after some (Read More)

Nov 21, 2012 - Brushy Peak
Every Thanksgiving me and Kyle head down south to visit out dad, and while we have our own traditions of a full day-after-Thanksgiving slate of activities including golf, bowling and basketball, I have developed my own day-before Thanksgiving tradition of going on a hike. This year my guilt about leaving my dogs for the next few days wouldn't allow me to selfishly spend a whole day on the trail, so I set my sights on the closest peak to my house, Brushy Peak in Livermore. Although topping (Read More)

Nov 10, 2012 - Discovery Peak / Rose Peak
It was a fairly chilly day for early November and still lacking snow equipment for a return to the Sierra I did a repeat of one of my favorite hikes - the Ohlone Trail to Rose Peak, with a side visit to the Alameda County Highpoint of Discovery Peak thrown in as well. The one thing I didn't like about visiting the Sierra was leaving before dawn - now that I am staying local I was able to give my dogs a nice 6 mile walk prior to heading out to the trail. Getting off to a late start for the (Read More)

Nov 03, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit
As I write this trip report it is December 2014, a little more than 2 years after this hike. I didn't start the mountainhiker.org website until early 2013, and have focused on keeping up with all hikes as they happen. This, and the fact that this was my 17th completion of the 4 summits hike will undoubtedly result in some foggy memories. This hike to Mt. Diablo and the 4 summits (Olympia/North/Diablo/Eagle) was the 11th hike I had done with Kyle and only his second time up to these peaks. (Read More)

Oct 27, 2012 - Desolation Wilderness / Carpenter Hill

Oct 20, 2012 - Mokelumne Peak

Oct 06, 2012 - Half Dome

Sep 29, 2012 - Sonora Peak / Stanislaus Peak

Sep 22, 2012 - Mission Peak

Sep 15, 2012 - Conness, Mount

Sep 02, 2012 - Tamalpais (West Peak), Mount / Tamalpais (Middle Peak), Mount / Tamalpais (East Peak), Mount

Aug 24, 2012 - Whitney, Mount

Aug 23, 2012 - Horseshoe Meadows

Aug 22, 2012 - Tioga Peak

Aug 11, 2012 - Dana Meadows

Jul 28, 2012 - Dana, Mount

Jul 21, 2012 - Clouds Rest / Dana Meadows

Jul 03, 2012 - Half Dome

Jun 23, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Black Point

May 19, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

May 12, 2012 - Montara Mountain

Apr 01, 2012 - Discovery Peak / Rose Peak

Mar 24, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Mar 11, 2012 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak

Mar 04, 2012 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Feb 18, 2012 - Black Diamond Mines

Feb 12, 2012 - San Luis National Wildlife Refuge

Jan 28, 2012 - Los Vaqueros

Jan 14, 2012 - Las Trampas

Dec 31, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Dec 17, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Nov 30, 2011 - Palos Verdes Nature Preserve

Nov 19, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Nov 12, 2011 - Saint Helena, Mount / Table Rock

Oct 31, 2011 - Discovery Peak / Rose Peak

Oct 22, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo) / Devil's Pulpit

Oct 08, 2011 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount / Monument Peak

Oct 01, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Sep 10, 2011 - Purisima Creek Redwoods Preserve

Sep 05, 2011 - Montara Mountain

Aug 21, 2011 - Morgan Territory Regional Preserve

Aug 14, 2011 - Sycamore Grove Park

Aug 08, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount

Jul 25, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Jul 09, 2011 - North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount

May 14, 2011 - Rose Peak

Apr 30, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Apr 03, 2011 - Los Vaqueros

Mar 27, 2011 - Rose Peak

Mar 12, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Feb 20, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Feb 13, 2011 - Discovery Peak

Jan 29, 2011 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Dec 31, 2010 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Nov 24, 2010 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)

Nov 14, 2010 - Mission Peak / Allison, Mount

Oct 22, 2010 - Diablo, Mount / North Peak (Diablo) / Olympia, Mount / Eagle Peak (Diablo)
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Hiking Stats by:  
Month# TripsMilesElevation GainTrip Time
March 2015658.4013,56619:34
February 201510116.1231,20350:55
January 2015896.8022,39638:43
December 20149105.4525,37838:52
November 2014676.2218,42532:35
October 2014458.7313,95424:15
September 2014558.8622,30331:34
August 20148103.1830,07054:22
July 2014466.2915,76135:06
June 2014439.2212,35920:46
May 2014574.5017,61034:19
April 2014462.6118,91429:16
March 2014567.4119,27333:37
February 2014571.1919,50634:04
January 2014332.729,21917:21
December 2013548.2213,87026:18
November 2013338.719,91420:09
October 2013448.2916,99325:40
September 2013459.4215,29124:09
August 2013443.1212,58720:23
July 2013223.577,03613:29
June 2013868.6420,40735:53
May 2013358.5115,14925:46
April 2013228.509,31718:20
March 2013219.436,52713:56
February 2013231.178,81315:01
January 2013336.418,54215:00
December 2012438.669,48918:44
November 2012343.7712,01218:01
October 2012338.7910,33219:17
September 2012442.5812,97822:46
August 2012437.6711,76821:08
July 2012339.7612,03822:18
June 2012123.686,87410:54
May 2012227.827,87712:20
April 2012121.505,65310:37
March 2012342.8613,02319:09
February 2012229.054,71811:12
January 2012228.737,20813:05
December 2011231.6610,32515:10
November 2011338.8711,15616:53
October 2011463.9418,56928:30
September 2011223.435,6487:41
August 2011329.576,45512:52
July 2011228.919,02212:52
June 201100.0000:00
May 2011129.447,33810:38
April 2011233.037,80014:38
March 2011241.469,80016:41
February 2011237.229,50015:56
January 2011115.854,9006:29
December 2010115.524,9006:55
November 2010228.707,60011:08
October 2010117.795,0007:25