Saturday, February 16, 2013

Birthday 2012

After looking through my pictures, I realized that I forgot to blog about my birthday adventures in California this past year. My parents are very sweet about separating my birthday from Christmas, and I was lucky to have them, my sister, and Ben all with me in California! I woke up to this wonderful pile of presents and a card (my dad will always get a card - I remind myself that it means I should always get him a card too).

After breakfast,  it was up to me to decide what we were going to do that day (since we were all on vacation from work). We've lived in the Antelope Valley all of my life, but we had never actually been hiking in the mountains nearby, so I decided it was time! The weather was a little chilly, but after being cooped up inside all of Christmas break I needed some sunshine.

Driving for about 25 minutes got us to the "Devil's Punchbowl", which has beautiful hikes and some really interesting geology (I was especially excited about the latter). Forgoing the 1 mile loop trail, we started on the 7 mile hike, which would lead us to the "Devil's Chair" - sounds awesome right?
Devil's Chair!
Ben is excited.
We were outfitted in differing levels of hiking-preparedness.
The hike was relatively easy (no steep climbs up or down), however, there were very narrow patches of trail along a mountain which were frozen over and dangerously slippery. I was especially afraid of falling, and so we walked like penguins along those ice patches (I wish I had a picture of that).

At mile 3.5, we reached the Devil's Chair. It was essentially a large rock that jutted out into the center of the Punchbowl, and you could see for miles in any direction. Thank goodness for handrails!

We were cold for most of the hike, but we were all glad for the exercise and the new adventure. The wildlife and foliage are unique to the area and come with a special desert beauty. When I feel like the desert is boring, it's nice to remember how gorgeous the view can be:
Along with developing hikes and keeping the area clean, the rangers also save owls that wouldn't survive in the wild (missing wings, etc). This one was especially inquisitive.
I'm so glad I got to spend my birthday in such a beautiful place!


Benjamin Leipzig said...

Happy birthday Hike, you deserved a gorgeous day for a wonderful hike. Im so happy i got to be a part of it!!!!

You were a very cute Penguin

Sophia said...

Yay for birthdays! The bridge looks so scary. Was it 7 miles round trip or 7 miles each way? Or was it a loop that was 7 miles? Pretty views!

Edie said...

I'm still obsessed with those rubbbery bark cool!