30 April 2010

sketches

Although already posted separately, here are the walking about sketches of the month.

Along the slopes just above the houses of Altadena.

Large bunches of flowers on a tree along the Toll Road.

25 April 2010

Henninger Flat

Angeles National Forest

I decided to head on up to Henninger Flats along the toll road this evening.  I need to walk more, after all.  Just past the two mile marker, I saw a nice tree full of flowers and sketched it.

Branch light on leaves and heavy with flowers.
A flowering tree along the road.

From there, I continued up to Henninger and a little bit further.  There were three deer in the campground and another one just outside it.  I went on up to where a road heads off to the west, quickly splitting into a numbered route and a road to a helicopter pad.  By then the sun was set.  I'd driven up to the start, hiked about three miles uphill, and got a sketch done in just a little more than two hours.

I took a good look around because it was still time for colors in the sky and I'd not been up that far and the road had just reached the edge of a ridge with the far side having a little different character from the side I'd been up.  Then I hiked back down.  It was shortly after 9PM when  I got back to the gate, locked sunset to sunrise.  It really was locked, so I had to backtrack to the other side of the bridge and follow the trail along the creek a little way before crossing and climbing out to my usual parking space along Altadena then hike back up the roads to the car.  It worked out and I got to lead a fellow who hadn't believed the sign along the shorter way back than going all the way down to the lot that is nearly to New York.

11 April 2010

Altadena Crest

Angeles National Forest

This afternoon I stopped by Jo-ann to find that if I ever want sock yarn in a solid color, I need to order it online or get some good stuff from Skein.  But that was on my way to go hiking:  there is a trail that heads up into the foothills from about halfway down to the bridge along Mt. Wilson Toll Rd.  I had seen a bit of it down below me when I was hiking much higher up from Rubio Canyon some weeks back.  It calls itself Altadena Crest trail and I decided to see what it's like.

The trail climbed steeply out of the canyon and then kept going steeply to get above the house level as it goes along the little canyons above Altadena.  A few of the canyons seemed like death traps should there be a flash flood.  A little way past a canyon I recognized as the one I'd been in, but far above on the trail from Rubio which ended in a rock slide here, the trail suddenly took a twisting and turning path downward with no apparent trail on the other side.  I decided not to take it further.  There wouldn't be much left anyway.

I turned back and climbed up the ladder set into the flood control dams to see up that canyon, the biggest along the way.  Not many people went that way.  There was an overgrown path up there.  I decided not to bother with the next, taller ladder up the next dam and instead turned and headed back.

A little past the highest point along the route there was this cross along the trail and two shorter, stout crosses below it on the steep hillside.  I don't know the history that has inspired these reminders, but the top one was draped in an American flag and a few firefighter caps that may hint at their reason for being.  I sketched them from the edge of the trail on the other side of the canyon.  I could only see the top one from by the top one.

Memorials built, likely for firefighters.