It was in the mid 80's; very pleasant. There weren't many people in that part of the OHV area, either. I just saw 2 guys in some sort of dune buggy thing roar by in the distance. Once I went over the saddle, I think I pretty much had the place to my self. Just me, quail, cactus wrens, and crickets. Strangely, no buzzards circled me on this hike. Maybe I looked a little too lively.
The trail seemed more clearly marked than before. I don't remember so many cairns. Some that I had seen before were gone, though. Maybe blown over during storms. I wonder who made the cairns, and why they went to all that effort. In places the trail is hard to see, but in other places it looks like hundreds of footsteps have passed over it.
It's a climb of only about 500 feet. There are a few short steep parts, but they aren't bad. I covered 3 miles in 2 hours and 42 minutes. That includes time spent enjoying the view. Two hours and 17 minutes of moving time. Hmm, that makes my average speed below 2 mph. And people always complain about me walking too fast. Ha.
I didn't realize I was right next to Dome Mountain until I got home and was looking at a map. I didn't take many pictures in that direction because it was to the west (and it was afternoon). I wondered if the cairns might be marking a trail to Dome Mountain, but I didn't see any more of them once I got to the saddle. No trace of a trail towards Dome Mountain, either. Maybe I'll find a route up there this winter. I've kinda wanted to go up there for years, but didn't think there was a route without real climbing. Maybe there is, after all.
This looks much prettier when you are standing there. Maybe I just don't know how to get a good picture of it. Or maybe one thing that makes it so pretty is being there, away from the turmoil in town, and looking at the picture at home while lazy kids are doing things that give me heartburn has removed its most enchanting aspect.
I took pictures thinking I would put together a panorama of the view from the saddle. It looks to me like there is plenty of overlap in the pictures, but ICE couldn't figure out how they go together.
I'd like to put this hike on EveryTrail, but I haven't been able to upload pictures to my hikes there for a few months. Something is broken, but nobody else seems to be complaining. I've tried 2 computers and 3 different browsers. I'm trying to upload from my web album. Maybe the web album has more albums than their software can handle ("Nobody will ever have more than 512 web albums!"). Who knows? Click below to see all of the pictures.