Journey: 52 Hikes and more

Archive for the month “March, 2010”

Hike 25 – In the Footsteps of Admiral Nimitz, January 30, 2010

After almost three weeks of rain and wet trails, finally a window of opportunity opened up for a hike. I had not hiked since January 10 mainly because of wet weather and the resulting muddy trails. My hiking partner Lt. Cracker and I decided that this was the day we’d finally get to stretch our legs again.

To avoid swampy and squishy trails, we settled on the paved Nimitz Way in Tilden Regional Park in Berkeley. We figured that the trail would be dry and the views of the surrounding areas would be stunning since Nimitz Way follows the ridge line of East Bay hills. From past experience we knew that this is a popular trail with hikers, joggers, bikers and equestrian riders. And dog walkers and cows too.

Interestingly, the Nimitz Way Trail is named after Admiral Nimitz who apparently used to hike this trail often and was regularly seen scattering wildflower seeds along the trail. This earned him the nickname “Johnny Appleseed of Tilden Park.” Apparently yellow lupine were his favorite.

The drive to our destination had been sunny with some scattered clouds and it looked like a prefect day for an enjoyable hike. At 8:40 AM, we pulled into the crowded parking lot at Inspiration Point. The temperature was a cool 47 degrees. While the trailhead itself was foggy, the closer we got to the trailhead, the sunnier the sky was so, we figured that the fog would soon pass.

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Hike 24 – Black Diamonds in the Fog, January 10, 2010

For my second hike of the year, I woke up early again; minutes before 6 AM on a Sunday morning.  A quick peep out of the window had me jumping back into my warm bed.  The roads were wet and the fog outside was heavy.  The kind of fog that shuts down airports and grounds even rescue efforts.  Instead of sleeping, I logged online and checked the weather.  The National Weather Service had put out a dense fog advisory until 10 AM for the area.  I decided to postpone the hike for at least 30 minutes hoping that things might brighten up by then.  Meanwhile, I occupied my idle mind with the internet.

While things did not look good outside, I still wanted to hike today if possible, for two reasons.  First, I was once again falling behind my target to hike 52 times within a year.  Second, and more importantly, I had been really looking forward to this hike because I planned to hike through Black Diamond Mines and parts that I have not hiked before.  From what I’d read about this hike, it was supposed to be an enjoyable one.  Also, I would be able to cover some of the sections I’d missed on my last hike here because of poor maps.

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