Mount Montara and Beach

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 Not sure how you catch fish in waves like that!

Saturday’s trek was to Mount Montara for some hiking training. Just before arriving, and almost across the street from the trailhead, is Montara State Beach. Oh my!

Have I mentioned how much I love California?

Love the rocky coast off Moss Beach Distillery. 
Love the rocky coast off Moss Beach Distillery.

 

We stopped at a little parking area of a not-yet opened restaurant that overlooked the beach. There were only a few people on the beach which was amazing. Even more wondrous were the waves and how hard they were crashing. This is shown in the top photo. These two guys were trying to fish to no avail. Nonetheless, I am grateful for the pix I got of them!

I was taking pix of the waterline of waves as they were receding from the sand (shown in photo) and a bigger wave came crashing in and I did not want to get wet. In my attempt to avoid the wave, my lens hood for the 50mm f1.4 fell off and was swallowed up by the mouth of the Pacific ocean.

This is the entry to the trail. This is the entry to the trail.

My 11-year old hiking shoes after their last hike.
My 11-year old hiking shoes after their last hike.

 

After spending about a half hour taking snaps on the beach, it was time to head over to the trailhead and begin the 8 mile hike up to the top of Mount Montara. Keep in mind, I am a beginning hiker and the idea of climbing this mountain was a bit daunting. The report on the hike used the phrase “moderately strenuous climbing” and had me a bit concerned.

On top of that, I am carrying my brand new 80 liter backpack that was loaded with some stuff and water and camera. The worst part of all was the fact that I was wearing my 11 year old Merrell hiking shoes that are totally worn out. They have no cushion, the heal is separating form the bottom, and rocks can poke through certain area. Check out the photo.  I have new shoes arriving Monday!

The hike was phenomenal. The total distance was 8.27 miles we had 4000 feet of elevation change and it took us almost 4.5 hours. Some of the slowness was due to the many pix that were taken and some of it was due to taking breaks, especially on the very steep parts.

The view along the way were incredible. There was a cool breeze that was a saving grace. There were several VERY STEEP sections that had me breathing heavily.

The people in this shot took a little branch off the trail to go out to this area and have a very clean view of the Pacific.
The people in this shot took a little branch off the trail to go out to this area and have a very clean view of the Pacific. 
This was one of the more level sections of the trail.
This was one of the more level sections of the trail.

 

 

One of the cool things about the trail was all of the cool flowers along the way.

A bend in the trail
A bend in the trail

 

Reaching the summit was quite the accomplishment. I was certainly a bit tired but the satisfaction of making it to the top re-energized me for the hike back down. Be sure to check out the video below as it has a few scenes that show some of the vistas along the trail.

Here I am at the summit. Way over my shoulder you can see Montara State Beach.
Here I am at the summit. Way over my shoulder you can see Montara State Beach.

 

Not sure what they are growing, but these fields were on one side of Hwy 1.
Not sure what they are growing, but these fields were on one side of Hwy 1.

 

I generally do not have lots of pictures of myself as most of my stuff is done while traveling solo. However, Lori came along on this venture and captured the below pix. I actually like some of them.

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