Canyon Climbing


Last Sunday’s hike was a wake-up call. It was strenuous, but I wilted much too quickly all things considered. Disappointing.

Helaine and I have been on two long walks since. Today I went with Cousin Melissa to hike Bommer Canyon.

Taxing! I held up a little better, but still needed to stop a bunch of times.

Bommer Canyon was used for cattle ranching for over a century. It was acquired by the City of Irvine in 1981. The whole Bommer Canyon Park is 16,000 acres.

I made a Central Park comparison a few days ago. Here’s another. Bommer Canyon is twenty times the size of Central Park, or a little larger than ALL of Manhattan! Bommer is just one of many publicly owned large wilderness areas in the region.

Because the canyon area is so precious and fragile it’s mostly off limits to pepole. The third Saturday of each month the park and its trails are open. Even then it’s just for a few hours.

bommer-canyon-hikeMelissa and I set out from the Bommer Canyon Cattle Camp site and took the Ridge Route climbing around 600 feet in 1.7 miles. The path is well maintained and easy to follow. There is little shade. Even on this January day the sun was strong.

We passed families, other individual hikers and a lot of mountain bikers. Everyone was friendly and shared the trail. No dogs allowed, which is common in wilderness areas.

On the way down we took the East Fork. This 1.3 mile trail drops very steeply in the first 3/4 mile then levels out. I’m not sure I would have been able to reverse the route, climbing East Fork first. We took a lucky guess and won.

Because of my exhaustion the last time, I left “Clicky” home. The camera was cumbersome and added to my difficulties. All these shots were taken with my cellphone’s camera.

There’s a lot more to explore.

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3 thoughts on “Canyon Climbing”

  1. Interesting to see! Thanks for posting Geoff! Would love to see the pictures on that Wildlife monitoring camera you showed! I wonder if they ever make those pictures available to the public.

  2. You are right–it sure is tinder dry out there–even the wild flower patch looks dry. By now, there should be green grass on the fields and lawns. That was the best part of January–green grass and roses, in the valley and snow in the San Gabriel and Sierra Mts. I am surprised the area is open to the public, at all, given the conditions. I hope you at least-carried water bottles!
    Comment 2–Does every state (with hills and mountains) have a ‘Hogback Mt/Ridge/trail???Just wondering–I know it is a common name here in the East.Thanks for all the great pictures Geoff–I am being reeducated.While looking through an old recipe book today, I found an old flyer from a place called ‘Los Rios Rancho—showing picturesque Oak Glen. Pictures depicting women in house dresses picking apples.It is touted as Southern Calif’s Largest Apple Orchard, and is located in Yucaipa, Calif. I haven’t googled it to see if it still exists, but this flyer has to be from the late ’40’s-mid ’50’s. Not sure if it is something I brought home or if it was in the cookbook I picked up at a tag sale, somewhere along the line. I just realized that this is down near Beaumont, and my sr&bro in-law used to live down there–in the 1980’s–in fact I believe Bill was Mayor of Beaumont for a few years.

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