On September 14, our hiking community lost 7 friends to a flash flood in Zion National Park. These 7 were more than hikers to everyone who knew them, and their absence is felt every day. We have mourned our loss, each in our own way; today, we'll celebrate the smiles you see in the photo above, and we'll shower a hilltop with our smiles in their memory.
Don Teichner led our sister group, the Valencia Hiking Crew. He offered his help when the Weekday Trailblazers were formed, and was one of the first members. Elyse has been entrusted with a portion of his ashes, with instructions to spread them along the dirt Don and our friends loved to walk on. In honor of Don, we'll make sure his ashes find their way into the brush he insisted on plowing through when perfectly good trails were available.
We have scattered wildflower seeds atop awfully-named Buzzards Roost the last two years in memory of our dear friend, Walter Lockhart, and I feel that summit is an apt place to remember Don, Mark, Steve, Linda, Muku, Gary, and Robin as well. I also feel that we should refer to that summit from now on as Blazers Roost- the place we visit with the beautiful souls that have walked on dirt with us. I like the thought that Don's essence will feed Walt's seeds, and that others might benefit from our remembrances of them.
From the Kanan Rd trailhead, we'll jump on the Backbone Trail for a cruise over to Zuma Ridge Trail. On the ridge, we'll have a great view of Zuma Beach and the Pacific. On our way there, we'll cross a stout footbridge, pass under an oak canopy, and come out into an opening. At the opening, look toward the sandstone formations in the distance, and you'll see Upper Newton Falls spilling through them like a ribbon when the stream is running.
This is an out and back hike at a total of 8 miles, with 1600' total elevation gain, most of it leading to the turnaround point with the ocean view- the erstwhile Buzzards Roost. The beginning and end of the hike are nicely shaded, the middle portion is exposed- prepare accordingly.
The Gentler option will also be an out and back, turning around at the fireroad, before the big climb- a total of 5 miles, with 900' of elevation gain.
From the 101, go south (toward beaches) on Kanan Road about 8 miles to just before the third tunnel (T1). The parking lot is on the right.
From Pacific Coast Highway, go north on Kanan Dume Road about 4 miles and make a left turn into the parking lot immediately after going through the first tunnel.
DISCLAIMER / RELEASE OF LIABILITY
IMPORTANT, PLEASE READ BELOW IN ITS ENTIRETY:
The hike host is a volunteer and not responsible for the group. Safety should be a priority for everyone in the group. Please treat this meet-up as hiking with a group of friends. If you become fatigued and unable to continue the hike, it is expected you will advise the hike host of this and return to our starting point on your own. If you are able to proceed, it is expected that you will maintain line of sight with other members of the group at all times and help to promote the group’s safety and fitness goals.
Outdoor sports and other events we plan can be inherently dangerous and accidents may happen. By participating in any posted event, you are taking responsibility for your own safety and well-being. The Weekday Trailblazers Meetup Group and its organizers are not trained leaders and we do not confirm the qualifications of any of its members to lead or participate in trips. All participants take full responsibility for their own actions.
If you choose to sign up for this or any Weekday Trailblazers Meetup event, you are releasing the Weekday Trailblazers Meetup Group and its organizers from all liability in case of possible injuries. Your personal safety depends on your own judgment and experience.
All participants must be 18 or older, or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.