Leaders: David Eisenberg, Charlie Knapke
We met at 6:30am at the Hurkey Creek Campground. We had planned to climb South and Antsell Rock but there was a late snowstorm which blocked the trail. Since we were unable to bag the quality peaks, we opted for quantity.
We first made the short caravan to the Apache and Spitler trailhead. We made good time up the trail which showed signs of recent trail work. Upon reaching the ridge, we found many of the trees coated with ice only on the northwest sides; the other side was bare! There were fantastic views from San Jacinto to Rabbit Peak.
Our 3rd peak of the day was Lookout Mtn. We stopped at Hurkey Creek Campground to pick up Patty Kline and Bob Hartunian on the way. As usual, we all walked right past the turnoff and had to come back to it. We then drove up to Rouse Hill for Patty's 200th peak. In spite of the sudden drizzle, we enjoyed the champagne, chips, and cake.
4 peaks in a day were not enough to make up for the disappointment of not climbing South and Antsell, so we piled back in the cars and drove over to Thomas Mtn. for our 5th and last peak of the day.
The party continued around the campfire with more champagne and goodies brought by our group. The advent of Daylight Savings time meant that we lost an hour of well deserved sleep.
On Sunday, we ascended to the PCT via the Cedar Springs Trail. We first turned East and climbed Pyramid where Bruce Peterson got his 100th peak! We then continued Southeast to Pine and Lion Peaks. On the return, we stopped at Little Desert Peak (6868'), placed an April Fools register, and added the peak to the UPS list.
Continuing in the April Fools spirit, we headed for Palm View Peak. After the numerous April Fools jokes already played on the group, it took the register to convince the group that the one foot high pile of rocks was really the peak. We found no view of any palms and so contented ourselves with staring at the front of our hands and drawing trees in the register.
The true April Fools nature of the hike came on the ridge down to Cone Peak. Thick brush and many false summits made for a practical joker's heaven.
We returned to the cars down the standard route, content in the knowledge that we had climbed 10 peaks.