The lowdown on this shuttle hike:
9 - 10 miles 2000 - 2500' of climbing 3500 - 4000' of descent 61 geocaches along the route, or more Fantastic views! Dry Lakes Ridge rises above the 33 Highway just north of Rose Valley to 5000' elevation, about 1500' higher than Rose Valley Road, and 550' higher than Nordhoff Peak. The summit basins for which the ridge is named are not from lakes, but rather the result of movement of thrust faults (see photo at right). From the ridge, we'll have fantastic views in all directions. How often do you have the chance to look down at Nordhoff Peak?
This will be a strenuous hike for the distance because the climbing can be pretty steep, and it will take us all day, in part because of the climbs, in part because of the amazing views, and in part because we'll be stopping to find every one of those 61 geocaches along the way. The caches will be easy to find, so the stops will be short. And they'll be welcomed so we can rest and take in the view!
The image at left shows the route (in brown) as seen by Google Earth. We're looking from the east, so Rose Valley and Nordhoff Ridge are on the left side of the image (on the other side of Highway 33), and Lake Casitas is in the upper-left corner.
The Details. This is a shuttle hike. We meet at Starbucks in Ojai (on the 33 at Old Grade Road) at 6:00 am for breakfast. We'll depart at 7:00 am, caravaning to the end of the hike. We drop off some cars, pile everyone into the the others and drive to the start. Then the fun begins!
Bring your lunch and snacks to eat along the way. Bring plenty of water! The trail may be a little overgrown, so long pants are recommended. Wear sturdy boots with good tread. Some of the hills could be a little loose, so you'll want to have good grip. Bring a flashlight in case it gets dark on the way down to the end. I expect the daylight will be plenty long enough for this hike to be completed in the light, but you never know what might come up. And don't forget your camera! (Hard to believe, but someone always ignores this advice and wants to kick themselves.)
Weather. Near the end of May, we should have pleasant temperatures, but remember that we'll be as high as 5000' where it will be significantly cooler than in the valley. On the other hand, there won't be much shade. If the forecast is for a hot day, we will hike instead up the Sespe River Trail from the end of Rose Valley Road. In the very unlikely event of rain, the hike will be cancelled.
Parking. We'll be in the Las Padres National Forest. We don't need Adventure Passes to park alongside Highway 33.
Note: This event is cross-posted to the Calabasas Day Hikers. (http://www.meetup.com/calabasasdayhikers/events/17199751/)