Sunday, January 24, 2010

Verdugo with Pete

My biologist/botanist/buddy Pete came up to visit this weekend from San Diego. We decided to take a hike in the Vedugo's this morning, to "work out the toxins" after spending the night before hitting the town. Pete knows his plants, and it was great to absorb some of his knowledge about the local vegetation.
California dodder (witch's hair above)
While spending some time sitting atop Tongva Peak, we were greeted by a small hiking party of five fellow hikers. While they ate their lunch a few feet away, Pete and I continued our conversation. At one point, Pete decided to show me an interesting device he uses at work, a wind gauge. I noticed while Pete was showing me the instrument, that the conversation from the group of five suddenly came to a halt, and I could feel their gaze upon our backs. Pete and I soon figured out why. They were fellow geek hikers!

Golden yarrow (above)
After Pete showed me the wind gauge, I asked one of the hikers if they knew any of the names of the snow covered peaks to our east. (I've been dying to know for well over a year now. Every time I drive to work in the morning, I look at the peaks and try to figure out which ones they are. I've never really known for certain, and it's been driving me crazy!) Anyways, one of the hikers quickly jumped to his feet and his girlfriend exclaimed, "Start with Mt. Wilson!!" The hiker pulled out his I-phone and pulled up the topographic maps of the area and proceeded to list them off for me. I'll try to relay the info, starting from left to right:

Strawberry Peak, Mt. Lawlor, Mt. Disappointment (the flat one to the left of San Gabriel Peak), San Gabriel Peak (the highest of the peaks pictured), Eaton Saddle (the dip on the right), Occidental Peak, and Mount Wilson (on the far right, actually not pictured).
Mt. Disappointment is an interesting peak. The top was flattened to install a Nike missile system in the 1950's.
White nightshade (above)

Overall, it was a good day to get outside and get some exercise. It was great to hike with Pete as well.

No comments:

Post a Comment