Saturday, June 02, 2007

Hiking Ventura County #19: Hummingbird Trail - Rocky Peak Park

I saved a relatively short hike for this weekend as I'm going to Rhode Island next week and I didn't want to be too sore on the plane. The Hummingbird Trail is similar to the Chumash Trail in it starts low and goes up until it reaches the Rocky Peak Fire Road. This trail differs in that there are more rocky outcrops along this trail including a really large rocky slope part of the way up. The rock was pitted where rain water accumulated. Some of the pits were the size of bathtubs but they were all dry. Unfortunately the rock is covered in graffiti. There actually is what appears to be an advertisement of HD Disks painted in 12 foot letters on the stone - sad.

Other than the defacing of nature, the views along the hike are pretty spectacular. The wildflowers were still in bloom. I saw a deer and a rabbit (not rabid) along with the ever present lizards. The birds were out in force including a Raven and what looked like a Hawk. (I'm not good at identifying birds.) When the wife first moved out to Oxnard and saw the size of the ravens out here, she christened them Pterodactyls. They are pretty big. The rock formations provided a multitude of caves and cubby holes for dangerous animals to hide in - I saw none though. Hidden amongst the rocks was the "Cache Twentytwo" geocache.

The trail ends when it connects to the Rocky Peak Fire Road. There was a bench here and it looked like a nice place to rest but before I rested I found the second cache on this hike, "Rocky Peak". This cache is very old in caching terms as it was hidden in February 2001. I was find number 174. I was surprised to find the cousin to The Mind Wanders... in the cache as swag. I picked up another travel bug, "Monument Peak (CO)" Green Jeep Travel Bug, to go with the geocoin I am holding. I am thinking about taking them to Rhode Island to drop off in the caches there. The cache was near a man-made cave and a natural cave. Inside the man-made cave was a sad scrawling. I hope whoever wrote it is well.

The walk down was uneventful. I did find a member of the Antarctica Paratroop Corp hanging out at the rock.

The beginning of the trail is all torn up and there is evidence of heavy earthmoving equipment. I hope they are making it a park and not a strip mall. The total hike was 4.8 miles with a 1,040 ft climb. Pictures are here.

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