Sunday, May 15, 2016

Blue Ridge/Fiske Peak and the Ohlone Wilderness Trail

That oak is in Ohlone Wilderness, but I did want to document my little trips out to the Capay Valley this spring. Northern California's spring is underrated, and it's already rated pretty highly. I abandoned my initial attempt to get up on the ridge in mid-March in the first quarter mile because the river was out of control, after 2 solid weeks of rain. A few weeks later I came back and it was easily wade-able. Fiske Peak is the northernmost prominent high point along the Blue Ridge, a steep and interesting formation which is little-known to many Bay Area hikers. In some ways it reminds me of Southern California's preserves, even around Stebbins Cold Canyon (very steep eroded sandy ridges, hot in the summer, and inland=drier vegetation). Looking north along the east edge of the coast range you can see that the mountains are a row of several thousand-foot upturned blocks, and this view is hard to appreciate anywhere but up on the ridge. I'd wondered about the complex geology of northern California before. I wish I'd taken my camera!

Fortunately I did take my camera to Ohlone Wilderness. I wanted to get to Rose Peak and back from Del Valle, despite having come down with a cough and fever two days before. Results were predictable. I gave up and turned around at Schlieper Rock, and still feel fried the next day. I are not smrt. At least I got some nice shots.

Above: the trail along the ridge at Fiske Peak. See what I mean? You could be in Orange County. From Below: Ohlone Wilderness in May.

Above: mariposa lily, which I had never seen (or noticed). California Native Plant Society on Facebook ID'd it in minutes of posting the picture. Below: Mt. Diablo to the north.

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