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Aspen highlands | photo by Matt Feyerabend
   Ventana Chapter Schedule of outings, meetings & other activities

Sierra Club Ventana Chapter Hikes and Outings for Monterey/Carmel and Santa Cruz
For March 1 to April 30, 2015
(Please contact leader to reserve a spot)

Wednesday, Feb 25
Hike: Toro County Park
This 5-6 mile hike with about 800 feet elevation gain at a moderate pace takes us through a forested valley along the Ollason trail then up to oak dotted grasslands. It's probably too early for spring flowers, but we can hope. Bring water & lunch. Meet at the dirt parking area outside Toro Park at 9:30 am. Leader: Gisela Nobinger. or 393-4983. Please let me know if you are coming.

Tuesday, March 3
Senior Hike: Henry Cowell Sand Hills
We'll explore Sandhill/Upper Henry Cowell area. It is a rolling hills semi wilderness hike. We will have lunch at the baseball park near the parking area. A shorter walk will be available. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave or beside the levee in the Gateway Center on River St, between Ross and Petsmart before 9:40 am. We will be parking at the Santa Cruz County Juvenile Facilities 3650 Graham Hill Road, Felton, CA. Bring water, lunch, $3/$2 carpool. Leader: Perry Brohmer. 1-650-793-3987.

Sunday, March 8
Palo Corona from the East Side
Let's meet at the backside of Baja Cantina restaurant at Carmel Valley Road. We'll walk through the Golf course and along the green meadow to the East gate of Palo Corona. Through the park and up the steep but comfortable road to Inspiration point for lunch. We may even go further to Animation Pond and back. A moderate hike of about 7 miles with 1,500' elevation gain/loss. Only heavy rain cancels. Meet at Baja Cantina at 9:00 am. Bring lunch and water. Call me for more information. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Sunday, March 8
Hike: Toro Park Loop with Airplane Wreck Site
11.8 miles in about 6 hours, elevation 1596, lots of spring flowers. We'll meet outside Toro Park's main gate at 9:00 AM! From Monterey 11 miles east on Hwy. 68, take Portola Dr. Exit. From Salinas west on 68 also take Portola Dr. Exit! We will encounter spring flowers, great views but unfortunately also some poison oak. Please dress accordingly- long pants, long sleeves. Bring water and lunch! For RSVP please call. Leader: Burkhard Siedhoff, 831-920-1803.

Sunday, March 8
Hike: Garzas Creek
Our 4.5 mile loop with 800 ft. elevation gain takes us through a redwood canyon and along Garzas Creek with six picturesque crossings. If we're lucky, we will see some naked broomrape and possibly some blue scarlet pimpernels in bloom. Bring water and lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 10:00 am from Rio Road Park & Ride in Carmel. Call for a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

Tuesday, March 10
Senior Hike: De Laveaga Park
We'll hike to the Top of the World and back among trillium and yellow violets. 3 miles w/some uphill. A shorter walk will be available. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. or at DeLaveaga Park at Twisted Tree picnic area off Branciforte Drive (not Avenue) by 9:50 am. Bring lunch, water, $2 carpool. Rain cancels. Leader: Janet Schwind, 425-3845.

Saturday, March 14
Hike: Mt Hamilton
Someone told me that there may be a new trail to the North Peak, a closed area before now. So let's go and see. Expect 5-7 miles, about 1000+ vertical feet and a very long and windy drive (to those of you have never been up there). We will meet at the Santa Cruz Gov't Center at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Saturday, March 14
Hike: Garland Ranch Park
We'll hike up to the Mesa via foothill trails, Buckeye and Waterfall, come back via Fern, Mesa, and Lupine Loop trails. 4-5 miles with modest elevation gain. Nice valley views, wildflowers. Meet at the Park & Ride on Rio Road at 9 am for carpooling. Please call me to reserve space or if wanting to meet at Garland Park. If there has been rain, the trails may be muddy and there might even be some water over the waterfall. Rain cancels. Bring snack/lunch and water. Leader: Martha Saylor, 372-9215.

Sunday, March 15
Hike: Terrace Trail and Garzas Canyon
Will the Ides of March thwart our quest for spring flowers? Let's go see! This moderate hike in Carmel Valley takes us on some level and some steep but not long ups and downs above Garzas Creek, then along the creek and one last climb up and down and out. We start mid-morning; dress in layers, bring water and snack, a stick for narrow trail spots. Expect to be back at the cars by mid-afternoon. For time and place to meet, call me. Leader: Mary Gale, 626-3565.

Sunday, March 15
Hike: North Wilderness Trail, Pinnacles National Park
9.3 miles, ~ 5 hours, elevation 1020 ft.
We meet 9:30 AM at Chaparral parking lot. Enter through the West Entrance by driving to Soledad and from there follow the signs to Pinnacles National Park! Bring lunch and plenty of water! It is hot in the Pinnacles!! The Park charges an entry fee. With some luck we might see Condors. Dress accordingly in case of poison oak. For RSVP please call. Leader: Burkhard Siedhoff, 831-920-1803.

Tuesday, March 17
Senior Saunter: Wilder Cove Walk
Docent led 3 mile walk on the Old Cove Landing Trail followed by a tour of the historic ranch complex. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. or at Shen's Gallery at King & Mission St before 9:50 am. To go direct, meet group in the parking lot for Wilder Ranch State Park one mile north of Santa Cruz on Hwy.1. Bring lunch, water, $2 carpool and share of parking fee. Leader: Janet Schwind, 425-3845.

Wednesday, March 18
Hike: Elkhorn Slough
Our 5-6 mile loop with minimal elevation gain at a moderate pace takes us along the tidal marshes of the slough. We should see birds other wildlife, so bring your binoculars. Also, bring water and lunch and a credit card for the entrance fee (last time it was $4.12). Meet at REI near Highway 1 and Imjin Pkwy at 9 am or at 9:30 at the Elkhorn Slough visitor center. Please let me know if you are coming. Leader: Gisela Nobinger, or 393-4983.

Sunday, March 22
Hike: From Los Padres Reservoir via Big Pine Trail to Blue Rock
10 miles, ~6 hours, elevation ~ 2000 ft.
We meet 9 AM, Carmel, Rio Rd. at P&R. for car pooling to the trail head. We most likely will have high temps. Bring plenty of water und lunch. You will meet the Big Four: brush, deadfall, poison oak and ticks. Please dress accordingly: long pants and shirts with long sleeves. Both light colored if possible. Great views like Mt. Elephant, Mt. Carmel, Puerto Suelo and more await you!! For RSVP please call. Leader: Burkhard Siedhoff, 831-920-1803.

Tuesday, March 24
Senior Saunter: Mt Madonna
This Santa Cruz County Park is located high above Watsonville on Hwy. 152. Moderate 2.5 mile hike in lovely forest and meadows. We'll return home via Gizdich Farms for pie. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. or by restrooms just beyond the Park's kiosk entrance about 10:00 am. Bring lunch, water, $4 carpool, share of entrance fee and ‘pie' money. Leader: Perry Brohmer, 1-650-793-3987.

Wednesday, March 25
Hike: Point Lobos
Our 5-6 mile loop with minimal elevation gain at a moderate pace takes us along beaches and steep coastal cliffs, along open and forested trails with varied views of the ocean and bays. Bring water and lunch. Meet at the Rio Road “Park and Ride” parking lot near Bank of America at 9:30 am. Please let me know if you are coming. Leader: Gisela Nobinger, or 393-4983.

Friday, March 27
Hike: Henry Coe
It's a long-ish drive to Henry Coe State Park, which is in the hills east of Morgan Hill. But it's worth it for the (usually) green rolling hills, oak studded meadows, possible wildflowers and interesting visitor center. We'll hike a leisurely 8 mile loop on the Fish, Middle Ridge and Flat Frog trails, with about 1000 feet of elevation gain. Bring lunch, water and wear sturdy shoes. Meet at 9:00 am at the far end of the REI parking lot, next to the wall, in Marina. Santa Cruz area hikers may meet at 41st Ave Sears, no leader, at 9:00 am and make their own way to the park. Take the East Dunne Ave exit from Hwy 101 and follow signs to the Park's main entrance. We should be at Henry Coe parking lot (fee) by around 10:30 am. Leaders: Cath Farrant and Mary Dainton, 372 7427.

Saturday, March 28
Hike: Palo Corona
Let's meet at the Santa Lucia parking lot on San Carlos Ranch Road in Carmel Valley at 9:00 am. From Carmel Valley Road at the traffic light go over the bridge where you will soon to your right will find the parking lot. We'll walk about 2 miles to the eastern gate of Palo Corona State Park. Up to Inspiration Point for a wonderful view and early break. Then on to Animas Point for lunch and the same way back. An easy hike of maybe 8 miles and 800 vertical feet. Bring windbreaker, poles and wear comfortable shoes. Also water and a sandwich. Heavy rain cancels. For more info call me. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Saturday, March 28
Hike: Simas Peak (Toro Park)
Let's enjoy expansive views toward Skinner Ridge, Salinas Valley and Chalone Peaks via this Black Mountain trail hike. 6-7 hour fairly strenuous of about 12 miles and 3000'. Meet at the dirt parking area outside Toro Park at 8:45 a.m. Bring lunch, 2-3 liters water, and rain/wind gear. Limit 12 hikers, so please reply to with your name and phone number, and we will call you. Leaders: Carol Greenstreet & Randy May.

Sunday, March 29
Hike: Jacks Peak Hound's Tongue
Along the quiet forested trails in Jacks Peak, we will likely find a beautiful display of hound's tongue in bloom. Spectacular views of Monterey, the bay and Carmel Valley are promised. About 5.5 miles with 700 ft. elevation gain. Bring water and lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 9:30 am from the NW corner of Whole Foods parking lot in Monterey–please park away from the store. Call me for a reservation, limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

Sunday, March 29
Hike: Danish Creek
We will begin our journey at Los Padres Dam in the northern portion of Los Padres National Forest. Hiking up the Carmel River Trail about 1 1/2 miles we will turn up the Big Pines Trail to the 3 mile mark, and then down to secluded Danish Creek Camp for lunch. A moderate hike of 9 miles and 1400' of elevation gain. Expect poison oak and probable ticks. Please call for meeting place and time. Leader: Larry Parrish, 622-7455.

Tuesday, March 31
Senior Hike/Saunter: Point Lobos
Two routes for different abilities will be available in this beautiful Park to the south of Carmel. Hikers will park at Whaler's Cove and make a loop around the park, about 3 miles, to a picnic spot called Piney Woods. After lunch we'll continue back to Whaler's Cove. Terrain is hilly but not strenuous. Walkers will park at Bird Island and follow a more level route. Scenery is spectacular. Dress for windy cool weather. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. Bring lunch, water, $6 carpool and share of Park fee. Restrooms. Leaders: Irene Lennox, 457-2690; Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Saturday, April 4
Hike: Russian Ridge, Raply Ranch Rd
This is an entrance and trail that we haven't done before in this Mid Pen park. It will be 6-8 miles and maybe 1100 vertical feet, with lots of sun and views to the coast. We will meet at the Santa Cruz Gov't Center at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Saturday, April 4
Walk: Carmel River Beach Saunter
How about a morning saunter with steps from Carmel River Beach to Monastery Beach, returning via the bluff trail. Enjoy the breathtaking views of Point Lobos and listen to the surf. Approximately 3 miles. Wear comfortable shoes and dress for the weather; wind breaker recommended. Bring water and a snack. Meet at 9 am at the parking lot at Carmel River Beach at the lagoon (south end of Carmelo in Carmel.) Call Leader: Martha Saylor, 372-9215 to reserve a place.

Tuesday, April 7
Senior Saunter: Paradise Park
We'll take a leisurely walk through the Park alongside the San Lorenzo River. Many spring flowers in the Park. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears or 41st Ave. To go direct, take Hwy. 9 to Paradise Park entrance. Follow signs to picnic grounds. We'll lunch at picnic area. Restrooms. Bring lunch, water, $2 carpool. Leader: Perry Brohmer, 1-650-793-3987.

Wednesday, April 8
Hike: Jacks Peak
Our 5-6 mile loop with about 700 feet elevation gain at a moderate pace takes us along the quiet forested trails with some views of Carmel and Monterey Bay. Bring water and lunch. Meet near the Whole Foods store at 9:40 am for carpooling or at the West Parking Lot at Jacks Peak at 10 am. Bring water and lunch. Please let me know if you are coming. Leader: Gisela Nobinger, or 393-4983.

Wednesday, April 8
Hike leaders meeting at 5:30 pm at the Monterey Library. All welcome.

Saturday, April 11
Celebrate Earth Day in Marina
Sierra Club Ventana Chapter is a sponsor for the 9th annual Earth Day in Marina from 9 am to 1 pm at Seaside Circle near the Marina Library. Come by the Chapter booth and pick up a reusable grocery bag. Check back on the website for a complete schedule of events.

Sunday, April 12
Hike: Mal Paso to Rocky Ridge (Wildflowers!)
We'll meander up a private road above Mal Paso Creek, eventually crossing the Creek, and then up a steep ridgeback, and finally through some redwood groves to the Rocky Ridge Trail. We'll end our circuit near Soberanes Creek. A beautiful, rugged 5-6 miles with 1000' of elevation gain. Bring lunch, water, and good hiking boots. Call early for reservations, meeting time and place. Leader: Larry Parrish, 622-7455.

Tuesday, April 14
Senior Hike/Saunter: Pogonip Emma McCrary Loop
This will be a 4 mile loop up the Emma McCrary mixed use trail at Pogonip (It connects with the Rincon and Ucon trails.). From the McCrary Trail the hikers will join the Spring Trail to the Brayshaw Trail, and from there they will walk to the clubhouse to enjoy lunch or snacks. A shorter Senior Saunter for walkers will be available, with Helena and Brooke. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave or beside the levee in the Gateway Center on River St, between Ross and Petsmart before 9:40 am. Parking is very limited so car pool. Bring lunch, water, $2 car pool. Leaders: Perry Brohmer, 1-650-793-3987; Brooke Ewoldsen, 475-6188.

Saturday, April 18
Hike: Henry Coe, south entrance
We've done this out of the way trailhead before, which is obviously the south end if you look on a map. Wildflowers? Expect 6-7 miles and about 1000 ft vertical. We will meet on Main St. in Soquel at 9:30 a.m. to carpool. Leader: Nick Wyckoff, (831) 462-3101.

Sunday, April 19
Hike: Soberanes Canyon
Parking can be tricky at this popular spot, so let's meet early at the Rio Road Park and Ride near the Crossroads in Carmel Valley to try to beat the crowd. We'll walk gradually uphill to the redwood canyon, find a nice spot by the creek to stop for a snack break, and return. Optional short walk on the ocean bluff for leader and anybody else needing more trail time. Dress in layers, bring water, snack, a stick for iffy spots on the trail and at creek crossings. For reservation and time to meet, call me. Leader: Mary Gale, 626-3565.

Monday, April 20
Hike: Pacheco State Park
Near the top of Pacheco Pass is a windswept area of rolling hills, secluded meadows, and in the spring hopefully wildflowers. We'll walk a leisurely loop of 5 or 6 miles with some steep ups and downs. Bring lunch, water (there is no drinking water at the trailhead,) sturdy shoes and maybe your camera. Meet at 9 am at the far end of the parking lot in front of REI (next to the wall) in Marina. Santa Cruz area hikers may meet at 41st Ave Sears, no leader, and make their own way to the park. Take Hwy 152 east to Pacheco Pass, turn right on Dinosaur Point Rd then soon the park entrance is on your right. We should be at Pacheco State Park parking area (fee) by 10.30 am. Leaders: Cath Farrant and Mary Dainton, 372 7427.

Tuesday, April 21
Senior Hike: Toro Park
We'll hike the Ollason Trail and hopefully see great flowers. 3 miles with one uphill section. A shorter walk will be available. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. or at Toro Park at the next to last parking lot near restrooms. Toro Park is off Hwy. 68 between Monterey and Salinas. Bring lunch, water, $5 carpool. Leader: Bev Meschi, 475-4185.

Wednesday, April 22
Walk: Asilomar to Bird Rock and back
Our 4-5 miles out and back with minimal elevation gain at a moderate pace takes us along the board walk and trail along Spanish Bay and the Ocean to Bird Rock with lots of views of the ocean. Bring water and a snack. Meet near the Fish Wife restaurant at 9:30 am. Please let me know if you are coming. Leader: Gisela Nobinger, or 393-4983.

Sunday, April 26
Hike: Jacks Peak
We'll walk around Jacks Peak clockwise, starting at the elementary school on Olmstead Road (near Monterey airport) at 9 am. Looking for wildflowers in bloom. A moderate hike of about 8 miles with less than 1,000' elevation gain/loss but with some beautiful views of Monterey and Point Lobos. Bring water and lunch. Heavy rain cancels, dribble doesn't count. Confirm by calling a few days before. Leader: Anneliese Suter, 624-1467.

Sunday, April 26
Hike: Kirk Creek - Twitchel Loop via Vicente Flat
14 miles, ~ elevation 2200 ft, ~ 7-8 hrs.
We meet 7:30 AM in Carmel, Rio Road, P&R. for carpooling to Kirk Creek Campground, 60 mi. south on Hwy.1. The hike starts opposite the campground gate (east side of Hwy. 1) at 9:15 am. Bring plenty of water and lunch. The views will be grandiose! For RSVP please call. Leader: Burkhard Siedhoff, 831-920-1803.

Sunday, April 26
Byrne-Milliron Forest Hike
Our hike of about 5 miles and 900 ft. elevation gain, winds us through a mystical redwood forest with hidden treasures, awesome vistas and spectacular trees. After our hike, we can stop at the Glaum Egg Ranch in Aptos to buy some very fresh eggs and to be entertained by dancing chickens. Bring water & lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 9:00 a.m. from the far end of the parking lot in front of REI in Marina or depart from the parking lot at the Corralitos Market and Sausage Co. at 9:50. Call for a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

Tuesday, April 28
Senior Saunter: Neary Lagoon and Wharf
4 mile walk from Lighthouse Field to Neary Lagoon to Santa Cruz Wharf. A shorter walk will be available. Meet before 9:30 am at Sears on 41st Ave. or by 9:50 AM in the parking lot at Lighthouse Field on West Cliff, just left of the bathrooms. Bring lunch or eat at one of the wharf's restaurants. Restrooms. $2 carpool. Leader: Jean Harrison, 425-5447.


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