10 April 2005
By: Lilly Y. Fukui
This enjoyable hike to Skinner Peak was led by none other than the ever vigorous Vigil Popescu, on a warm Sunday morning in April. The happy group of six included Virgil, Lilly Fukui, Val Saubhayana, Ginny and Jim Heringer and Dave Cannon (who just did his "I" provisional the day before, on Black Mountain #4).
We started our two-hour drive from Sylmar and at SR14 and SC 65 we headed out on a dirt road for approximately 14 miles to the trailhead at Bird Spring Pass.* We passed a lot of cows (some fat, some skinny), and saw lots of blooming goldfields (yellow flowers).
We started our hike up the PCT and the names of the yellow, blue, and purple flowers, along with plants (Mormon tea), and trees (Pinyon, Joshua), were provided to us by Ginny while we hiked and saw a variety of them. We also encountered lots of soft snow near the top and a few of us were snacking on same. We got to the peak in less than two hours, just in time to enjoy our lunch. The view from the peak was spectacular - clear blue sky and puffs of altocumulus undulatus clouds!!
With a full stomach we cheerfully headed down. By a suggestion from Jim, we all took a nice shortcut to the lower portion of the trail. This was fun. Before we knew it we were surrounded by the beautiful yellow flowers again and sure enough back to our vehicles for a chat and homemade banana bread for all! It was a very nice day, except for the below incident.
*It is important to mention here to all ladies (and guys): DO NOT leave your valuables in your car/truck/Jeep/SUVs at any time!!! A theft (Val's purse and Virgil's coins) occurred from Virgil's vehicle sometime during the four hours that we were gone hiking! We did see a young man siting in his SUV when we got to Bird Spring Pass but he soon got out and started hiking. He did have a backpack on him. There were also quite a few bikers nearby. Still, we just can't figure out who might have done this! There was no sign that Virgil's vehicle was broken into. There is good news, however: A Kern County Sheriff has caught the thief who had a lot of credit cards on him (which didn't belong to him, of course), one of them being Val's!!!
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