And Points West
Leaders: Bob Hawthorne, John Frost
We all got plenty of exercise this weekend, but most of it was bouncing in cars over long, rough roads, or pushing reluctant vehicles up the steep, narrow gullies that serve for roads in the Indian Reservations of San Diego County. Saturday afternoon we hiked to the top of Palomar Mountain, a 4 mile round trip to the high point at the eastern edge of the ridge; the other peaks were reached by car.
Bob Hawthorne and his interesting Indian companion, Martin Asuna, led us to a spectacular dogwood thicket near the top of Pechacho Peak on Saturday, June 3. The trees were in full bloom, and were covered with white blossoms some three inches in diameter. That night we were treated to a chilly but interesting lesson in astronomy by Dr. Gates, of Palomar Observatory, from the top of Boucher Hill (one of our less strenuous 100 Peaks). Mars, Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury were all visible, and some could see the moons of Jupiter through their binoculars.
The following day we roared up to the top of Hot Springs Mountain for a great view of San Diego County. Salton Sea to San Gorgonio, and all around to Cuyamaca were visible. No one was shot or attacked by the fierce Los Coyotes Indians - in fact, the toll taker at the reservation entrance was quite pleasant. The young female ranger reported to be at the lookout failed to materialize, providing the only major disappointment of the weekend.
Several ambitions mavericks climbed Morgan Hill Sunday morning, but failed to clear up the dispute as to exactly where the peak really is. Lew Hill says he found a cairn, but his described location is different from both Hawthorne's and mine. Perhaps some veterans reading this can shed some light on this mystery.