Last year in the month of May I hiked almost 90 miles. This year in the month of may I cot close to 20 with this hike. It was tough as I was not in shape. We started out early leaving the house at 5:00. We were at the trailhead of the San Bernardino trail at 6:00. There was a group of Boy Scout sleeping in the parking lot when we got there.
The hike up the first part of the trail is a little steep and has several switchbacks. I found myself chasing my daughter Emily and her friend Michael. Emily was out front leading the way.
As we got further up the trail I noticed a tree stump that as freshly torn up. I was going to show Emily and Michael the tree stump. However they were about 100 feet in front of my and I was breathing too hard to feel like garnering their attention. I just keep up the pace trying to stay up with them.
We came around another switchback and headed up the trail further. Emily was out in from of Michael by about 20 feet. I was about 40 feet behind Michael. All of a sudden Emily stopped, turned, had eyes as big a saucers and said, “Dad, it is a bear”. I hustled up the trail and sure enough there was a black bear off in the distance slowly making its way through the woods. It looks like it had been stirring up the pine needles about 50 feet off the trail where Emily saw him.
There was not enough time to get the camera out an get a picture of the bear in the distance. We just got the picture of where he was. We hiked on. However, Emily did not get out in front as far. She stayed closer. She had never seen a bear before. She told us the reason she called for me is because I had hiking sticks. What on earth am I going to do with a pair of lightweight aluminum hiking sticks when it comes to a bear?
As for bears, if you treat them well, they do not bother you. If you do not treat them well or take the proper precautions, it causes a problem. Nothing like a good cartoon used with the creators permission to give bears a point of view. www.raesidecartoon.com
We hiked on and fairly soon Michel spotted a deer. It was a buck in the distance. (lower right corner area of the picture.)
We continued our way up the San Bernardino trail. We realized that we were not going to make it to the peak before we had to turn around so that Emily could go to work. We ate lunch and then traveled up the trail to Limber Pine Bench to take in the view.
It was a little hazy. However, I though it would be a cool place to camp as you can look out towards all the city lights once night falls. Further up the mountain behind us was some large patches of snow. We will have probably missed our last chance this year to play in the snow on this mountain.
We headed back down the trail, headed to A&W Root Beer for a root beer freeze and as planned, an afternoon nap. Overall, it was a berry good hike. I just need to get in more miles as in July, I will need to make it to the top of San Gorgonio.