June 27, 2013

Trust Issues: Steripen Freedom

Trust Issues: Steripen Freedom

I’ve been twice burned by Steripen’s Adventurer hydrophoton water purification device, so forgive me if I’m a little less than glowing in my comments. No, the problem wasn’t that the light came on when it wasn’t supposed to—it was that it never came on at all. The Steripen, in its various incarnations, uses ultraviolet light to kill waterborne pathogens. When all goes well, there seems little doubt the Steripen (more…)

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June 26, 2013

The South Fork Loop

The South Fork Loop

“Don’t tell me how far it is,” I say. I don’t want to know. We’re at the Mill Creek Ranger Station, waiting for it to open so we can get hiking permits. You need permits to enter the San Gorgonio Wilderness, even for day hikes, and in Summer there’s a trail quota to deal with as well. Our planned destination today is the summit of San Gorgonio Mountain, officially 11,499′, unofficially a few feet higher (more…)

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June 16, 2013

San Gorgonio Panorama

San Gorgonio Panorama

At just over (or maybe under) 11,500 feet, San Gorgonio Mountain is Southern California’s high point, considerably eclipsing rivals San Jacinto Peak and Mount San Antonio. This might just be the most inspiring summit view in SoCal, but you’ll have to work for it. The shortest approach, via the Vivian Creek trail, is about 8 miles and 5.5K of vertical. The South Fork approach, from the north, chops a bit of vertical (more…)

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June 12, 2013

Mount Hollywood

Mount Hollywood

Rising only 1625 feet above sea level, Mount Hollywood may sound lowly. But it is surely one of the must-do summits in Southern California. You won’t need much more than a pair of sneakers and a water bottle to make it to the top, and from there, you’ll be rewarded with incomparable views of Griffith Park, Los Angeles, and the surrounding L.A. Basin (more…)

Posted in Hiking | 4 Comments

June 8, 2013

The Winter Wrap

The Winter Wrap

Well it looks like I’m finally hanging up the skins on this unfinished-business of a 2012-2013 ski season. I’d hoped to add a volcano trip here in the waning weeks, but even that has fallen through, so I spent the day instead looking over posts and pictures from these past few months, thinking about some of the highs and lows of what turned out to be another record-dry Sierra winter (more…)

Posted in Skiing | 2 Comments

June 3, 2013

OR Cirque Pant

OR Cirque Pant

At some point I realized my backcountry ensemble was starting to enter a Mao phase. To combat the trend, I’ve begun seeking cheerier gear and clothing choices. So I was drawn to Outdoor Research’s Cirque pant not so much because of my high regard for OR’s Igneo pant, but because of the Cirque’s ‘glacier’ blue option. How are the pants themselves? Who cares—the color is awesome! Seriously, I was looking (more…)

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