Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Sesar Canyon
To the Lookout
March 7, 2018

The Sesar Canyon trail is actually an old road that eventually meets up with the Nordhoff Ridge Road 12 winding, steep miles later.  Today we are hiking up to the Lookout which is a good uphill haul and about 3 miles one way.   We notice more burned out structures on the drive up to the Upper Ojai and how green the pastures are at Black Mountain Ranch.

Our hike begins on the road and immediately we can hear the creek running.  Our favorite Toyon bush has taken a hit and we will miss the abundance of red berries it glorified every year.

Immediately we can tell that this area had an intense burn. Rocks are blackened and some have split with the heat.  The ground is charred and looks like a charcoal kiln.  The saving grace is that the bottom of the creek bed is mostly spared at least enough to shed some green in the canyon.

We meet only four male hikers in the early morning who start every day by trekking to the second creek crossing and then head back to the Summit Burger Stand for breakfast and coffee.  Now that is the way to rock retirement and we will be doing this in the future (I'm still working :-).

The creek crossings are such a refreshment and luxury.  Bodee and Lucy can sense the running water way before we can see or hear it and they forge ahead.  Rock hopping  is a pleasure these days and I beg for the day when I can pack my water shoes in my pack again - It's been years since they had a presence in my pack because of the drought!

The trail/road is grisly and we have to be aware of troubled trees and loose scree.  We can hear the scree sliding down the slopes and it's overtaking the road.  We clamor through the debris, head up to the hairpin turn and enjoy the creek before heading up to the lookout.

Looking south we can see the Upper Ojai Valley with it's charred perimeter and looking north we can view the burned and scarred Topa Topa mountains.

We observe lupine and fennel taking hold and the oaks and sycamores are seriously trying to put out some leaves.  It's a study of perseverance in the highest regard.  Plants have strong wills and we see signs of that everywhere even in these seriously burned areas.  We respect and honor their endurance.

We will hike Sesar Canyon again shortly and see how things have changed.  Those of us who hike and have an intimacy with the wild lands have a greater understanding of what a wild fire does to an environment.   Today we reflected on life, the will to live and our own mental recovery.

Hike with Perspective,

Beth & Laura
Bodee & Luci

No comments:

Post a Comment