San Luis Obispo County High Point Trip Report

Date: April 7, 2001
Author: Kurt Mitchler

Rain up and down the entire state on the previous day did not discourage us. Parked at the trailhead around 10pm.

Rained all night, but this turned to snow by morning. We discussed changing our plans of backpacking in for the night, which included a full moon. Since visibility was down to 100 ft this was not a draw.

With 16 miles to cover I wanted to break up the hike into two full days. The boys said they could do it in one. We hit the trail at 8am. The 8 miles to the peak was in blizzard conditions with Tehachapi winds blowing across the ridge line trail forcing us to walk south with our faces to the east.

A straight ridge trail without visibility and steady elevation gain has few landmarks to follow your progress on the topo. By noon I was uncertain how close we were to the top and the boys spirit was winding down. They chose to push on, the wind was howling on the exposed top which we reached 30 minutes later.

Heading back, the weather cleared enough to catch some sun and the views of the Carrizo plain to the east and a valley at the base of coastal mountains to the west, also covered in snow.

Mud was the final hurdle. The last 2 miles was walking in wet clay that stuck to our boots, creating 20- pound weights on each foot. The same was true for the ride down in the truck. We were sliding sideways on the turns and since steering was impossible, I had to keep the vehicle pointed towards the edge of a mild 200ft drop to keep the rear-end from burying into the uphill side. 1 hour to cover 3 miles.