Ventana Wilderness, Los Padres National Forest
There have been so many places to which I've wanted to go for many years, and one of them has always been the mountains off of Big Sur. I fell in love with the Big Sur area the first time I ever drove along the 1 in 1999. Finally, after just under six years, I finally got off my lazy rear and visited the Ventana Wilderness. My backpacking friend and I started up right off the 1 along the Vicente Creek trail up to the Vicente Flats campground. Although it was summer, we has a sunny afternoon greeting us up the incilne to the ridgeline. Not only was there sun, but there were also several playful whales off the coastline. The entire way up we could see them breaching and spouting. At several points I thought I was listening to my stomach grumble, but no! It was the whalesong echoing up the coastal mountainside.
In the morning we were greeted by gorgeous stands of coastal redwoods. We had their shade until reaching the cars when, after a succulent fish and chips lunch at the Lucia Lodge, we went our separate ways. I got to drive back down a sunlit PCH with nary a RV in front of me. Perhaps it was only fitting that in exchange for such a glorious time God claimed my trusty Rangers hat with a gust of wind, carrying it off a cliff into the Pacific. My hat can always be replaced. Such a grand hike cannot.
The pictures were taken with my Minolta system starting with a roll of Kodachrome PKR 64 followed by a roll of Scala.
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