Leader: Bob Schull
Asst.: John Frost
A sunny "shirtsleeves" day with extensive patches of snow still remaining from a recent storm, tall timbered rolling country at 8000' altitude, and a congenial group of 34 peak baggers - these are the ingredients for a most pleasant day in the San Bernardino Mountains.
The trail to the Three Sisters Peak is six miles long (round trip), with 500 feet of elevation gain, and follows a dirt road most of the way. From the summit, the panorama of snow-clad San Gorgonio is seen, with San Jacinto looming farther in the distance. The desert from Palm Springs to Yucca Valley lies below, and the other two "sisters" are seen on the nearby ridge leading down to the east.
First to sign in at the peak register was 12 year old Debbie Kazlowski, marking her 100th climb to the top of a qualifying peak. Debbie has made some great hikes with us, and we are all proud of her accomplishments. Next in line at the log book was her smiling father, Joe Kazlowski - also celebrating his 100th peak. Congratulations to you both!
At the end of the line was young Andrew Mitchell, age 4 months, out on his first summit climb. He had little to say, but appeared to be enjoying himself. Hope to see you on many more hikes in the future, Andy.
On the way back, we stopped to note several enormous bear tracks in the snow. The animal must have been a big one, judging from the size of the prints, and it's a wonderful feeling to know that these fellows still prowl in our local mountains, not yet extinguished by the inroads of civilization. At the end of the five hour hike, about half of the group continued on to do nearby Constance.
One casualty of the day was the Akawie clan, who met us at the end of the hike for a belated celebration of Alice's 100th peak. The excuse for the delay was a crumpled fender on the family bug - they did Constance instead and met us at the trailhead for cake and coffee. This makes the fourth emblem for the family, quite an accomplishment.
Best of luck to you, Alice, and we'll be cheering for you on your second hundred, too!