Sept 16, 2006 Sanborn - 10mi
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© Signite 2006. Email Paul.

Click on the map to the left to view the path I took.

9/16/2006 - After many weeks of 10+ mile hikes (Forest of Nisene Marks, Big Basin, Marin, Whitney, Half Dome), I was tempted to stay put this weekend. But at work, I signed up for a fitness marathon thing - a virtual walk to Vegas, and so I thought I should at least do a bit of walking. We were given free pedometers to measure our distances, which I'm wearing even as I type this. My pedometer reads 18.67 miles so far (started 2 days ago on 9/14/06).

7 of these miles were from 2 days of jogging and badminton, and 10 miles were from the hike today. I hadn't hiked this particular loop in probably at least 5 years, perhaps even more. I may be the only person that has hiked this loop, not because it's difficult or long, but because about 3 miles of it is on roadways, not foot-trails.

Click to view larger photoThe loop starts at the end of Sanborn Road where there's dirt parking for 2 to 3 vehicles. The trail starts steeply up about 0.5 miles to The Lake Ranch Reservoir. This is a 'secret' pond I discovered not long after I moved to California. I have walked just about every inch around the pond and have visited it probably more than 20 times alltogether over the years. I've seen lizards, fish, dragonflies, beetles, snakes, various birds, deers, newts, ladybugs, frogs, and beautiful wildflowers.

Click to view larger photoI was surprised to see the pond still fairly full of water. Usually by this time of the year, the pond is only perhaps 1/4 full. But today, it looked to be at least 40-50% full. The wildlife to take notice today was the dragonflies. I only saw perhaps 3 or 4 species, but that's probably because I didn't look for the others.

Click to view larger photoBeyond the pond, I took the John Nicholas Trail to the Black Rd. trailhead, about 1.4 miles from the pond. On the way there, I saw some patches of baby oak treelings, but they were all browned out and dead, as if they experienced sudden death, like pesticides were sprayed and took their lives. I was puzzled because not far from these browned plants were other ones - green and healthy. Later on, I read postings at all the trailheads announcing the presence of "Sudden Oak Death" pathogen in the area and that hikers should be careful not to help the pathogen by taking care of how soil from one area to another is carried.

I didn't take many photos beyond the Black Rd trailhead as I wanted to see how quickly I could hike. At the Sunnyvale Mountain picnic area/parking, I did find a stalk of purple/pink lily-like flowers.

The total elevation change today was ... lowest = 1350' (Sanborn park car entrance), highest = 2900' (on Skyline Tr, near Skyline Blvd); change = 1550', pretty mild. Total distance was about 10 mi even. Time took: 3 hr and 29 min. Here are the timestamps:

Time Distance Location
1:24 pm 0 mi Parking - start hike
2:28 pm 2.5 mi Black Rd trailhead
2:47 pm 3.5 mi Black Rd - Skyline Blvd
3:24 pm 4.9 mi Sunnyvale Mountain TH
3:37 pm 5.4 mi Mid-Trailhead
3:50 pm 6.1 mi Skyline/Sanborn Trails JCT
4:01 pm 6.7 mi Sanborn/San Andreas trls JCT
4:33 pm 8.6 mi Sanborn Tr/Campsites Trailhead
4:53 pm 10 mi Parking - hike end (3 hr 29 min)

Hope you enjoyed the trip with me! -Paul