Davy Brown Campground – Car Camping with Soph

Making moss cakes at Davy Brown Campground

Once again, I had an opportunity to go camping with my daughter. This time, because I recommended it about 7 months ago in the winter, she wanted to go car camping. That doesn’t mean she wanted to go to a campsite and pitch a tent next to a car, she wanted to actually sleep in […]

Montgomery Potrero and McPherson Peak – A Backpacking Trip

Painted Rock Campsite

Total Trip Length: 33.5 miles in 3 days This trip to Montgomery Potrero started like many things do: in a bar, over drinks. Several coworkers and I were sitting around chatting, and, as most conversations with me go, it turned to hiking and the outdoors. All three of us were experienced backpackers and were eager […]

Backpacking Reyes Peak – A windy campsite with a great view

My backpacking partner

Sophia and I wanted to get some backcountry fun in before the cold fall weather comes rolling in. We decided to try our hands at backpacking Reyes Peak. I had been to Reyes Peak once and ended up hiking to Haddock Mountain on the same day. I really thought the area was beautiful and I […]

If you go Hiking and Backpacking in Santa Barbara and Ventura, get this book

Hiking and Backpacking in Santa Barbara and Ventura

After spending years reading Jerry Schad’s essential Afoot and Afield in San Diego County, I moved to Santa Barbara and, with my feet firmly in the warm sand at the beach, stared at the gorgeous mountains to the north, and started planning how I was going to get know them as well as I did […]

Camping in Cleveland National Forest – A rarely visited area

Camping in Cleveland National Forest

Combining other errands with camping in Cleveland National Forest turned out to be a pretty good idea. Since we had things to do on Friday and then Saturday morning, we got a late start, heading east through Ramona, reaching the trailhead at around 5:30. The PD and I had hiked in this area before, so […]

Chicken Spring Lake Backpacking Trip – Mother Nature had other plans

Chicken Spring Lake

For this Summer’s backpacking trip, I decided to invite a group of people that don’t normally get into the outdoors. I searched for a place that was fairly accessible, yet still offered backpacking newcomers a glimpse of the beauty that is Sierra Nevada. Chicken Spring Lake, less than 5 miles from the Horseshoe Meadows Trailhead […]

Forbush Flat – A Daddy and Daughter Backpacking Adventure

Soph at the Trailhead to Forbush Flat

Mommy was traveling for business, so I decided to ask Sophia if she wanted to go backpacking overnight and sleep in a tent. She jumped at the chance. I even offered to take her other places instead, just to make sure that she truly wanted to go. She said backpacking was what she wanted to […]

Point Mugu State Park – Camping with Another Old Friend

Boney Mountain from the Fireline Trail

When my oldest friend and I were working out a good place to camp, Point Mugu State Park came to mind as an ideal spot at the midway point between us. It turned out to be a great weekend. And something that should happen more often than once every 40 years. Update 05/03/2013: Many, if […]

Valencia Peak – Peak #15 – Camping at Montaña De Oro State Park with an Old Friend

Reamo exploring the rugged coastline

Valencia Peak Elevation: 1,347′ Miles: 4 Trail head Agency: Montaña de Oro State Park One of the ways I like to stay in touch with long-time friends is to schedule camping trips. Most of my friends are not as avid outdoors people as I am, so I can’t expect them to jump at the chance of […]

Yellowstone National Park – A huge park with many personalities

38 Wildfires from the plane

Before arriving at Yellowstone National Park, from what I had seen before, and most recently in the Ken Burns’ documentary America’s Best Idea, I had an impression that Yellowstone was going to be a vast, chalky landscape that smelled like sulfur with steam hissing all over the place. And bison, tons of bison. Well, it was that, but […]