Now that I’ve put away the last of my camping gear and finally transitioned from old job to new, I can write about our awesome trip to Big Sur in October! Yes, it took me 1.5 months to finally put away the last camping item — a sleeping pad that had found a temporary home in my living room, not wanting to return to the depths of my storage unit. For full disclosure, the past 1.5 months have been incredibly busy: I was working full time while interviewing and job searching, Thanksgiving was on the timeline, Mitch (my future wedded partner and best friend) returned from a nine month deployment (see some awesome photos by the talented Katie Yuen here), and I adopted a rescue bunny from this amazing organization. Anyway, that is my list of mostly reasonable excuses, but without further ado: BIG SUR CAMPING!
Camping and I go way back. My adventurous dad instilled in me a love for nature and sleeping in tents, taking my sister and me every summer ever since I can remember. We’ve been to so many national parks, we’ve hiked a seemingly endless number of trail stairs, popped a squat on the most precarious of mountain ledges, seen the most beautifully clear, placid bodies of water (B.O.W.!), and gotten eaten alive by mosquitoes (they love me) countless times. Despite the ravenous bloodsuckers and the difficulties of nature calling in nature, all of these adventures opened my heart to the awesomeness of the great outdoors that I continue to enjoy with Hiking Club all the time! Thanks, Dad!
The first group (Jarrett, Sarah, James, and I) arrived to our campsite at Fernwood on Friday evening after sunset. Using our $2.67 headlamps (thanks, Costco), we enjoyed a dinner of quesadillas and set up camp pretty easily despite the darkness. We were pretty bushed (nature pun!!) from the work week, so we kept it pretty low-key that night around the fire and got to bed pretty early. Oh, and despite all my crazy lists and prep-work and countless email reminders to the crew, I forgot my pillow — classic. I was roughing it… with my down sleeping bag, sleeping pad, cozy tent, and iPhone. No pillow means roughing it, right?
The next morning, I woke up pretty early because we were trying to snag some very coveted hot springs reservations for that night. After over 100 phone calls, Sarah and I got a message saying they were all booked up. I was pretty bummed, but Jarrett and James were great at keeping my spirits up.
For breakfast, Sarah prepared her homemade instant oatmeal (she is awesome) for the crew. She is like the Martha Stewart of the great outdoors, minus the insider trading. After breakfast, we headed one mile south for a quick, three-mile hike to Pfeiffer Falls and Valley View. Since this post is already becoming quite long, I’ll just link you to a good trail description here.
Overall, the hike was short (three miles) yet challenging at some parts. The points of interest were a bit underwhelming, but it was a great way to get active early in the morning and productively use our time before Paul and Lisa arrived.
Part Two of our day is up next!