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Short Afternoon Hike, Henry Cowell

  • Oct 24, 2013 · 3:00 PM

Distance: 3-4 miles

Elevation gain: About 500  feet

Exposure: Mixed Sun and Shade, mostly shade

Trail Conditions: Steep in places, 2 creek crossings (coming and going); ticks and poison oak. 

Duration: It usually takes me about 1.5 hours but I'm guessing it will take us a little longer. Because of the late start and, as it's getting dark earlier, especially in the trees,  we'll need to get back before sunset. 

What to Bring: Water, tick repellent, hiking sticks if you use them. A snack if you want to munch on something at the overlook bench.  We'll be mostly in the shade but there will be some sun at the overlook bench (hopefully).  As it gets colder in the trees especially down near the water, I would wear layers although you'll get warm hiking back up the hill! 

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Because the parking area along Graham Hill can be difficult to find, we will carpool from K-Mart in Scotts Valley. It will take less than 10 minutes to get from there to the trailhead. I can take 4-5 people in my car, with a limit of 12 hikers we should be able to make it using just a few cars.  Please try to be on time. 

From the trailhead we will descend to Powder Mill Creek and pass over the creek (which is low and easy to cross) the path twists and turns to ascend into the park until it intersects with Powder Mill Fire Road. We will turn left at the intersection and connect with Pipeline Road where we will turn right and walk up to the overlook bench.  At the Overview Bench we will rest for 5-10 minutes and then start our return trip.  We'll cross the creek again and wind our way back up to the trailhead. 

The trail is steep in some places, bring hiking sticks if you use them. 

There is poison oak and the possibility of ticks, repellent is a good idea.  A hat and sunscreen are suggested although our time in the sun will be short.

This is a moderately strenuous hike with lots of ups and downs, while I set a slower pace, you should be in condition to keep up with the group. I also ask that if you are faster than the group and you want to go ahead that you keep the group in sight. I want to make sure we stay together as a group within reason. There are steep hills, ruts, ticks and poison oak. There are several areas with fairly short but sustained uphill climbs.  If you do not enjoy going up or downhill this is not the hike for you.  By joining us you agree to hold the organizer harmless in the event of an injury. You are responsible for your own safety. 


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  • Sandy

    Late afternoon adventure through great new trails. Thanks, Ralaine :-}

    October 24, 2013

  • Ralaine

    It worked out great and we were able to check out a new trail.

    1 · October 24, 2013

  • Magi

    Sorry. Im still over the hill at a client snd wont make it today

    October 24, 2013

    • Ralaine

      We were sorry to have missed you but I did get your message in time. Thanks for letting me know.

      October 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    is the trailhead at the south boundary cowell parking area? (which is by the horse showgrounds and the lil strip mall) i'd like meet you all there.

    October 23, 2013

    • Ralaine

      The reason I want to carpool from k-mart is that the directions are confusing and unless you take the right entrance you can damage your car or show up at the wrong place.

      October 23, 2013

  • Amoreena

    Home with kids. Have fun!

    1 · October 22, 2013

  • Lisa E.

    I'd like to go, but I have to work...

    October 22, 2013

    • Ralaine

      Maybe next time!

      October 22, 2013

2 went

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