Friday, February 9, 2007

Pinnacles Loop - April 2006

April 2006
Pinnacles Loop
8 ½ miles, 1,540 elevation gain
Graciela, Mary, Julie

In April we went to the Pinnacles. It takes awhile to drive there, so we stopped in Hollister at a little bakery and got delicious bagel chips.

What a glorious hike. We did the loop which took us up to the high country climbing stone steps, ladders and narrow walkways. We took a break up on top. A ranger told us that several days before condors had been sighted at this spot. It was hot. Graciela improvised hiking shorts out of her sarong and looked quite sexy hiking along. We ended up taking a little side trail to go through a tunnel. The Pinnacle formations are amazing.

The trail looped around through a small meadow o the picnic area on the King City side of the Pinnacles. This used to be a campground and years ago I was attacked by either raccoons or wild boar while camping there. We continued around the far side and climbed down into and through the Balcony Caves. They are steep and dark and you definitely need a flashlight to go through. Often there is water in the cave, but I think it was dry that year.

Then we continued on to car. It seemed like the trail went on forever. Each time I do this hike, it comes out with a different entry and exit point. I do love the variety of environments you travel through. Don't do this one too late in the year - it gets too hot and dry.

Lesson Learned: Coming back can be the hardest part of the hike.

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