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Aspen highlands | photo by Matt Feyerabend
   Ventana Chapter Schedule of outings, meetings & other activities

Sierra Club Ventana Chapter Hikes and Outings for Monterey/Carmel and Santa Cruz for August 20 to October 30, 2014
(Contact leader for reservations)

Saturday, August 30
Event-Marina Labor Day Parade
Come to Marina and celebrate their 38th annual Labor Day Day Parade on Saturday, August 30. The schedule is: 11am - 12pm along Reservation Road from Crescent to Vista Del Camino. 12pm-2pm festival with games and activities for all ages at Reservation and Vista Del Camino. Be sure to stop by the Sierra Club table.

Saturday, August 30
Hike: Mt Madonna County Park
We'll go up the Spring Trail from the Spring Lake entrance to see how the huckleberries are doing in this marginal weather year. It is probably 8 miles with about 1300 feet of elevation gain. We'll meet on Main St in Soquel at 9:30a.m. to carpool. Call me if you want more information. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831)462-3101.

Saturday, August 30
Hike: Timber Top (aka Boronda Trail)/de Angulo Trail
The climb to the Top is steep and strenuous! (2,500 ft in 2.5 miles). After a well-earned rest at Timber Top we hike along the Coast Ridge Rd. to the ridge trail head of de Angulo Trail, descending through burned and live redwood and oak forest back to Hwy. 1. It is ~7 miles with a total elevation gain of ~3,000 ft. Dress in layers. Bring a minimum of 2 liters of water. This hike is point to point. We will meet 7:30 am at Rio Rd. Carmel, P&R. The drive to the Timber Top trail head on Hwy. 1 is 32 miles from Rio Rd. Leader: Burkhard Siedhoff, 831-920-1803.

Saturday, September 6
Hike: Point Lobos
We'll start this 4-5 mile hike around beautiful Point Lobos at the highway, walk down to Whaler's Cove, go north to Ixchenta Point and the bedrock mortars, back to visit the Whalers' Cabin, then on to the top of Whaler's Knoll and return via south coast trails. There will be wild flowers to see and wildlife to watch. Meet at the Rio Road "Park and Ride" just east of Hwy 1 at 9 a.m. There will be a short carpool to start. Bring snack, water, and binoculars. Call me to reserve a space. Leader: Martha Saylor, 372-9215.

Sunday, September 7
Hike: Hills above Brazil Ranch
For a change, just a short drive to the trailhead near Bixby Bridge for this lollipop loop of about 6 miles, 1000' elevation gain/loss. We'll walk up on a trail, partly very steep; then cow trails over the meadows high above the Big Sur coast with the Big Sur lighthouse. Probably no flowers anymore but wonderful wide views, or through coastal fog. Lunch at a stand of redwoods. Back on trails. Meet on Rio Road at Park & Ride in Carmel at 9:00 a.m. Call for more info. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Tuesday, September 9
Senior Hike: Harvey West
4 miles with some uphill (some steep) from Harvey West parking lot by baseball fields. We'll walk by Sacred Tree and the old clubhouse. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. or at Harvey West parking lot by 9:50 a.m. Bring lunch, water, $2 carpool. Restrooms. Leader: Joan Brohmer, 462-3803.

Friday, September 12
Hike: Mill Creek Redwood Preserve
This is a 6 mile meander through forests of redwood and madrone, ending at a bluff with a spectacular view of the ocean. Bring lunch and water. We have secured permits from the Monterey Regional Park District for 4 cars so we must carpool to the trailhead on Palo Colorado road. Meet at the Rio Road Park and Ride at 9 a.m. Please phone to reserve your spot, limited to 12 participants. Leaders: Cath Farrant and Mary Dainton, 372 7427.

Sunday, September 14
Hike: Harper Canyon to Black Mountain (Toro Park)
We'll start at Harper Canyon gate, at the back of Toro Park and hike 9 miles with 2000+ feet elevation gain up Harper Canyon trail to the top of Black Mountain. From there we return via upper Harper Cyn. trail, the old Ranch trail and the lower Harper Cyn. trail to the trailhead gate. Expect wonderful back country views. We'll meet at 8:30 a.m. For reservations, please call. Leader: Larry Parrish, 622-7455.

Tuesday, September 16
Senior Saunter: Chaminade
2 mile fairly easy walk through the redwoods, some uphill. May eat lunch at the Chaminade Conference Center bar or bring lunch to eat at picnic area. Beautiful views. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave or go direct and park behind tennis courts at Chaminade by 9:50 a.m. Bring lunch, water, $1 carpool. Restrooms. Leader: Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Saturday, September 20
Hike: Big Basin Redwoods SP
This will be a hike from Big Basin Headquarters down the east fork of Waddell Creek into Last Chance. The distance is a little over 8 miles with 1400 feet of elevation gain. We'll meet at the Santa Cruz Gov't Center at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Call for more information. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Sunday, September 21
Tour: Big Sur Light Station
How often have you driven past the Big Sur Light station and wondered what's up on that giant rock? You can learn a good deal about it by going to, or you can walk up that steep road (300 feet in half mile) and learn all about it from a docent-led tour for just $12. This is a first-come first-served event, so before the 21st, call the leader to reserve a space. Mary Gale, 626-3565.

Tuesday, September 23
Senior Hike: Ford Ord
4 to 5 mile hike on Fort Ord public lands. This hike has a long steep uphill to a high ridge. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. or at Deer Park Shopping Center in Aptos about 9:45. Park near gas station. To go direct, take Hwy. 1 south to Reservation Rd. exit. Follow Reservation Rd. to Portola just before Hwy. 68. Turn right. Parking off Portola. In a short distance, you will enter parking lot with restrooms. Bring lunch, $4 carpool. Leader: Joan Brohmer, 462-3803.

Wednesday, September 24
Hike: Toro County Park
This 5 mile hike with about 800 ft. elevation gain takes us through a forested valley along the Ollason trail then up to oak dotted grasslands. Bring water & lunch. Meet at the dirt parking area outside Toro Park at 9:15 a.m. Please let me know if you are coming: Leader: Gisela Nobinger, 393-4983.

Saturday, September 27
Hike: Big Creek Reserve/Canogas Falls
The USCS Landels-Hill Big Creek Reserve, about 40 m down the coast, gave us a reservation to hike on their property. We'll hike up to High Camp for a short snack, then further up and steep down 1,000' to Canogas Falls, the largest waterfalls deep inside the Ventana Wilderness. Back out to High Camp to get fresh water and down over the meadows with the ocean shimmering beneath us. Just wonderful! Let's hope for some flowers. A strenuous day with about 15 miles and 3,000' elevation gain/loss. Bring a hearty lunch and water, a hat and sun protection, hiking poles and $3.25 entrance fee plus some $ carpool gas help. Call definitely for a reservation. Meet at Rio Road Park & Ride at 8:00 a.m. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Tuesday, September 30
Senior Hike/Saunter: Waddell Creek
Approx. 5 mile hike on tree lined dirt roads in Big Basin Redwoods State Park. Sun and shade. Some uphill. We'll go along the Marsh Trail to the newly redone Nature Center for tour and lunch. Alternative shorter 2+ mile walk available along the Marsh Trail to the Organic Gardens, and back along the Marsh Trail to the Nature Center. Prepare for sun/heat/fog. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. or at Shen's Gallery at Mission & King St. before 9:50. To go direct turn right off Highway 1 just before the Waddell Creek Bridge at the sign for Rancho Del Oso Nature and History Center. Restrooms. Bring lunch, water, $4 carpool and share of park fee. Leaders: Perry Brohmer, 1-650-793-3987 / Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Tuesday, September 30
Walk: Soberanes Canyon
Our 3 mile easy walk takes us into a beautiful redwood canyon where we'll have lunch beside a creek. Along the way, we'll see a nice variety of coastal shrubs, wildflowers and ferns. Bring lunch and water. Arrive early; we depart at 10:00 a.m. from the Rio Road Park & Ride in Carmel. Call me a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

Saturday, October 4
Hike: Garland Ranch Park
4-5 mile stroll along the Terrace/River Road trails of East Garland Ranch. Meet at Garland Ranch´s lower parking lot at 10:00 a.m. to carpool to Borondo and Garzas Canyon Roads. Bring water and lunch. Leader: Kris Kissman, 521-5662.

Sunday, October 5
Hike: Big Basin to the Sea (using the Bus)
Please join us for this marvelous all-day car-free hike from the Big Basin Park Headquarters to the mouth of Waddell Creek on Highway 1. We may try a new route this time, on the Howard King Trail. Meet at the Santa Cruz Metro Center in time to board the #35A bus, which will leave promptly at 8:30 a.m. We should be back at the Metro Center by around 6:00 p.m., after returning down the coast on the #40 bus. The hike is about 12 miles, but moderate and relaxing, with ample time for photos and lunch. Space will be limited, so please call to reserve a place or for more info. Leader: Peter Scott, 423-0796.

Tuesday, October 7
Senior Saunter: Palm Beach/Watsonville
Pleasant 3 mile walk along the slough by Pajaro Dunes community of vacation homes, then down to the beach and walk on hard sand along the ocean's edge back to the beginning. We'll lunch at the end of the hike in the picnic area. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. To go direct, drive past main Watsonville exit on Hwy 1 and take Riverside exit, turn right and right again. At West Beach traffic light take a left, drive to the end of the road and park. We'll meet on the road near the entrance to the parking lot. (Lot requires a fee.) Bring lunch, water, $3 for carpool. Leader: Denise Lucy, 728-6552.

Tuesday, October 7
Walk: Total Lunar Eclipse
Join me at Pinnacles National Park, if you are able to stay up all night to see the SPECTACULAR LUNAR ECLIPSE! The Penumbra commences at 1:17 a.m. on the 8th, Partial at 2:18, Full eclipse at 3:27, Maximum at 3:55; Full eclipse ends at 4:22, Partial at 5:32 and Penumbra ends at 6:32 a.m. Thursday morning. Call leader for information of meeting time and place at Pinnacles where we will be viewing the eclipse. I do screen my calls, so leave your name and phone number on my message machine. Leader: Esperanza Hernandez, (831)678-8538.

Wednesday, October 8
Hike: Nisene Marks State Park
6-8 miles, 800 ft. elevation gain, moderate pace. We hike mostly through redwoods from Porter Family Picnic Area along the former railroad tracks past up Hoffman Historic Site then down to the Bridge Creek and return along the creek. Bring water and lunch. Meet at 9:00 a.m. at the parking lot near the REI Store in Marina or about 9:40 behind the Epicenter Bicycle store in Aptos. Please, let me know if you are coming: . Leader: Gisela Nobinger, 393-4983.

Wednesday, October 8
Sierra Club Outings Meeting
Instead of our regular meeting with hike and outing leaders at the Monterey Public Library, we want to have a Pot Luck at Cathy's and Mary's place, with help by Kris. Hikes to be collected are for November and December 2014. Please come to Pacific Grove, 235 Crocker Ave. at 5:00 p.m. Call for more info: 372-7427.

Friday – Sunday, October 10-12
Hike: Castle and Andesite Peaks (Donner Summit Area Sierra Nevada).
We will be staying at a ski club lodge in Soda Springs. Saturday morning we take PCT to Castle Pass, then ascend a use trail to the nearest of the three Castle Peak summits. We then follow an unmaintained ridge trail to Andesite Peak before returning to Boreal. Strenuous, 10 miles and 2500'. After lodge cleanup on Sunday morning, we will do out-and-back walk to High Loch Leven Lake. Moderate, 7 miles and 1200'. You should be comfortable with strenuous hikes, steep and loose unmaintained use trails, and altitudes up to 9000'. Your place must be secured with a check for $70 made out to South Bay Ski Club for two nights bunk lodging. Bring your own sleeping bag & towel, breakfasts and lunches, and good rain gear. You will be asked to contribute something to a Saturday night potluck dinner. Car pools are essential, as parking is limited. Limit 10 hikers So please reply to with your name and phone number, and we will call you with details. Leaders: Randy May & Carol Greenstreet.

Saturday, October 11,
Hike: Asilomar-Pebble Beach Forest & Coast Loop
4 mile loop inland of Spanish Bay and through Pebble Beach neighborhood to sand dunes and horse trail to beach trail. We then go out to Point Joe and return along the beach boardwalk back to Asilomar Blvd. Beach wild flowers and wildlife to be seen. Meet across from the Fishwife Restaurant on Sunset Drive and Asilomar Blvd., Pacific Grove at 9:00 a.m. Back about noon, bring snack and water. Call me to reserve a space. Leader: Martha Saylor, 372-9215.

Saturday, October 11
Hike: Vajrapani to Castle Rock SP
We'll start at the Vajrapani Buddhist retreat off Kings Creek Rd for a rather steep uphill trek into Castle Rock SP. Expect 6-7 miles and 1800+ vertical feet. We will meet at the Santa Cruz Gov't Center at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Call for more information. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Sunday, October 12
Hike: Holt Road to Snively's Ridge
Let's do a good hike before the clocks change. We will carpool from Mid-Valley to the trailhead at the Western extremity of Garland Park. Then up a moderate incline about 5 miles to our lunch spot atop Snively's Ridge. Possible side trip to higher elevations. Views should be gorgeous during our Indian Summer. About 10 miles total, perhaps 1500' elevation gain. Meeting at 9:00 a.m. Call for meeting place. And reservation. Leader: Larry Parrish, 622-7455.

Tuesday, October 14
Senior Saunter: Neary Lagoon and Wharf
4 mile walk from Lighthouse Field to Neary Lagoon to Santa Cruz Wharf. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. or by 9:50 in the parking lot on West Cliff just left of the bathrooms (south of and opposite the Lighthouse). Bring lunch or eat at one of the wharf's restaurants. Restrooms. $2 carpool. Leader: Jean Harrison, 425-5447.

Thursday, October 16
Hike: Point Lobos
Our 4 to 5 mile loop with minimal elevation gain takes us along tree-clad headland trails with magnificent views and through a quiet Monterey pine forest. We are certain to see a variety of wildlife and wildflowers. Bring water and lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 9:30 a.m. from Rio Road Park & Ride in Carmel. Call for a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

Sunday, October 19
Hike: Soquel Demonstration Forest
This forest in the neighborhood of Nisene Marks invites strong hikers for a loop of about 11 miles up and down on narrow trails under madrone trees, pines and oaks. Hikers looking for a new challenge should not miss this strenuous outing, however, on a moderate pace. We'll meet at K-Mart in Seaside at 8.00 a.m. for the one hour drive. Hikers from Santa Cruz may meet us at the entrance gate to the forest on Eureka Canyon Road at about 9:00. Bring lots of water and a good lunch; hiking poles. Hiking boots are better than tennis shoes. Please call for more info. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Sunday, October 19,
Easy Afternoon Walk: Fort Ord Dunes State Park
Will the sun shine for us, or will fog drip enhance the experience of a stroll along first a boardwalk, then a road and then a track down to the beach? Either way, this is a short walk with little up and down. On the beach, you can sit, walk or run before we return to the parking lot. Wear layers and sun block, bring water. For meeting place (with directions for any Fort Ord newbies) and time, call leader: Mary Gale, 626-3565.

Tuesday, October 21
Senior Hike/Saunter: Point Lobos
Two routes for different abilities will be available in this beautiful Park to the south of Carmel. Hikers will park at Whaler's cove and make a loop around the park, about 3 miles, to a picnic spot called Piney Woods. After lunch we'll continue back to Whaler's Cove. Terrain is hilly but not strenuous. Walkers will park at Bird Island and follow a more level route. Scenery is spectacular. Dress for windy cool weather. Meet before 9.30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave. Bring lunch, water, $5 carpool and share of Park fee. Restrooms. Leaders: Joan Brohmer, 462-3803 and Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Wednesday, October 22
Hike: Fort Ord
Our 6 mile loop has about 700 ft. elevation gain, moderate pace. This area is wide open with nice views and no shade. Bring a hat, water and lunch. Meet at 9:15 a.m. at the new parking lot for Fort Ord National Monument along highway 68 (across the street from Toro Cafe). Please let me know if you are coming: Leader: Gisela Nobinger, 393-4983.

Saturday, October 25
Hike: Butano State Park
This is the walk up to the airstrip at the top of the park that we've done before in the spring to see the rhododendrons along the way. So we'll see what it looks like in the fall. About 9 miles, 1300 vertical feet and views from the lunch spot at the top. We will meet at the Santa Cruz Gov't Center at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Call for more information. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Tuesday, October 28
Senior Hike/Saunter: Pogonip Emma McCrary Loop
This will be a 4 mile loop up the Emma McCrary mixed use trail at Pogonip. (It connects with the Rincon and Ucon trails.) A shorter Senior Saunter for walkers will be available. From the McCrary Trail the hikers will join the Spring Trail to the Brayshaw Trail, and from there they will walk to the clubhouse to enjoy lunch or snacks. Walkers and hikers will start off together but walkers will go more slowly, stopping as needed. Meet before 9:30 a.m. at Sears on 41st Ave or go direct to Golf Club Drive off Highway 9 (4th left after turning on to Hwy 9 from Hwy 1), drive to the end and park. Parking is very limited so car pool. Bring lunch, water, $1 car pool. Leaders: Perry Brohmer, 1-650-793-3987 / Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Thursday, October 30
Hike: Maple Falls
Join Andy Werner and Lynn Bomberger on this 7 mile Nisene Marks hike with 700 ft. elevation gain. Our path takes us through a lovely forest along beautiful creeks and eventually to serene Maple Falls. If our timing is right, we will enjoy gently falling maple leaves around us as we relax for lunch at the falls. Agility is required. Bring water & lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 8:40 a.m. from the far end of the parking lot in front of REI in Marina or depart from the parking lot behind Aptos Station at 9:30. Call for a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

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