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Hiking Stats as of 11/15/2018
Total Trips:
Total Distance:
Total Elevation Gain:
 325
 3,891.68 miles
 1,060,050 feet
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 hiking this area. That's not to say that the 4 summits (or 5 now that I always tag Devil's Pulpit too) are not challenging and enjoyable - they most certainly are. It's just that this is more of a maintenance hike for me to keep up my strength for my visits to other places. Diablo was my very first hike, however, and will always be a favorite.

I started out a little past 10 AM on a sunny yet unseasonably cool day. After a few minutes more than 1 hour I found myself up on top of Eagle Peak which required about 1800 feet of elevation gain. From there the views towards the higher Diablo summits are quite enjoyable, and I made my way towards the main summit next. I arrived on top of Diablo a little less than 3 hours after starting out. Incredibly, they are still working on repairing the summit tower which has now been closed for almost 2 years.

The best part of the day occurred just as I began the descent. I spotted a family of raccoons off the side of the trail with no apparent fear of bypassing hikers. One of the raccoons struck gold when he found a nearby trash can where he began to look around. After a minute the raccoon emerged with an empty wrapper which for some reason seemed to satisfy him, as he took it to the ground to inspect further. I didn't stick around to see if additional trips to the garbage would be made, although given the meager prize I suspect the raccoon would try for something better before going back to his mates.

From the trash can I made my way towards the Devil's Pulpit, which is on the back side of Diablo and requires nothing more than an easy trail walk to reach. Once at the bottom of the Pulpit I made my way straight up the fracture in the middle, trying to make it a bit more challenging than the normal zig-zag approach that I normally take. The ascent was still easy, taking all of about 30 seconds but the views make up for the lack of any excitement on the climb. I took note of the next stop on the day - North Peak - and made my way back to the trail. 1 hour after leaving the Pulpit I was on top of North Peak, where the views toward the Bay were obscured by the incoming fog. I spent a few minutes up top, then made the half hour trip over to the fifth and final summit of the day, Mt. Olympia. 90 minutes later I was on the final trail back to my car, having completed another fun trip around the summits of Diablo.

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