Sunday, June 17, 2012
Day 9: Sea Ya Later
Today will be the final day of the trip with ocean views, unfortunately, but things started with a hike to Cowles Mountain in Mission Trails Regional Park, the highest point in San Diego. A crowded trail--parking was a bigger challenge than the hike itself--but the top of the mountain offered 360 degree views of San Diego. If not for a thick layer of haze, Tijuana and the Los Coronados islands of Mexico would have been visible off in the distance. Post-hiking it was off to Cuyamaca Rancho State Park east of San Diego to set up camp again. Legend has it that "Cuyamaca Rancho" is an old Spanish phrase that loosely translates to "Cuyamaca Ranch." I've only spent a few days on Southern California and I'm already picking up Spanish! After the tents were up at the oddly-named Paso Picacho campground, more hiking was in store. The two mile hike up to Stonewall Peak provided amazing views in every direction...it was so impressive that it almost looked fake. It was too bad, though, that a lot of the trees had been burned a few years ago in a wildfire. Back at camp, dinner served up some hilarious contrasts. The older people one campsite over had a tablecloth and were sipping wine by the fire. Meanwhile, I was hunched over a tattered grocery bag wolfing down half-melted protein bars and eating peanut butter with a filthy spork. But nothing could bring me down...I knew early on that today was going to be a great day. The second I spotted that giant dancing waffle in San Diego this morning, I knew the future held loads of promise.