Leaders: Stag Brown & Joe Young
Seven hikers met at Lloyd's of La Cañada for the traditional pre-hike breakfast at 6:00 am, and these seven joined eight others at 7:00 at the La Cañada meeting place for the caravan to Monte Cristo Campground. The weather that day was sunny, the wind calm and temperatures moderately cool after a three day storm had brought much needed rain and snow to Southern California.
At Monte Cristo Campground we tossed a coin to determine whether the hike would be conducted in a clockwise direction (Rabbit, Granite, Round Top, Iron) or counter-clockwise (Iron, Round Top, Granite, Rabbit), and counter-clockwise won. We began the hike at 8:00, following Stag up ridges to the summit of Iron, the last arriving there at 9:10. We stayed briefly on the summit before following Joe up the firebreak to Round Top. En route we stopped on a bump on the ridge where Harriet Edwards led us in some Oktoberfest songs. Harriet, who knows German fluently, may help lead us in song at this year's HPS Oktoberfest (Oct 5-6).
We arrived at the summit of Round Top at approximately 10:40. Having put 3000' of gain behind us, we enjoyed phase 1 of lunch. Charlie Knapke found the register can which was well hidden, the proof of which is that no entries were found in the register from August 1990 through February 1991. Views north and northwest were particularly clear. The Tehachapis and other northern ranges were prominent. Looking east Waterman and Twin were beautiful in their mantle of white. Only four days earlier they were totally dry.
We then proceeded to Granite, which was snow covered from the 6300' elevation upward. We relaxed on the rocky summit block, occasionally pelting those below with snowballs. Nami "Thumper" Brown built a snowbunny, neatly decorated with whiskers of pine needles. We enjoyed phase 2 of lunch, enhanced with weenies, mustard included, and homemade bread provided by Stag.
Leaving Granite at about 11:30, we proceeded down to little Rabbit. We stayed on its summit a short time, at which point Stag led the group down the south ridge of Rabbit to the dirt road leading to the campground. Instead of hiking the road from here, Stag led us cross-country generally southwesterly along mostly open ridge tops to a point perhaps 1/2 mile from the campground, where we again intersected the road. We walked the road for that last stretch, arriving at Monte Cristo at 2:50.
Nine of this very congenial group met at Pepe's of La Cañada for post hike revelry and good Mexican food.