Just got back from a two-night trip to Ventana Wilderness. I hate planning group camping trips, because everyone bails. Indeed, pretty much everyone couldn't, bailed, or flaked, but a few people made it, and roasting bananas in rum and sugar over a campfire tastes like heaven, so as long as we all come out without poison oak (a big if), it will all be worth it.
We hiked from Los Padres dam on the east side of Ventana Wilderness (that's "Big Sur" for all intents and purposes) up the Carmel River. The trail was in OK shape most of the way (6.5 miles), but deteriorated a bit in the last mile or so up to Hiding Camp, where we spent Saturday night. I explored the Puerto Suello trail from there up to Ventana Double Cone, but it a miserable impassable mess, far worse than the Enchanted Gorge, or my previous trip to Ventana. The trail from Hiding Camp to China Camp seemed like it might be in passable condition.
The Ventana Wilderness Association maintains a useful website with trail conditions. Hopefully I'll get out there on a trail crew soon. Or I'll just head back on my own with a folding saw and a machete. And some Tecnu.
|The Long View|
|Impassable Puerto Suello Trail|
|Rub My Belly|
|The Drive Down|