I had a blast on my Ohlone Wilderness backpack trip despite the fact that I had an extremely sore left Achilles tendon on day two. It is still sore today so it is going to be a week of resting to give it time to heal.
There were four of us on the trip: J., D., R., and I. We met at 9 a.m. at the Del Valle park trail head. We left two cars there and jumped in the other two cars and drove to Sunol. We were on the Ohlone trail leaving from Sunol park by 10 a.m. We had a steep but beautiful ascent for most of the day. The hills of Sunol were still very green from the rainy winter season. The wild flowers were out in force. The weather was awesome: a blue sky, a cool breeze, and a warm sun. We took lots of breaks to admire the views and the wild flowers and rest. We stopped for lunch at the Sunol backpack area. We had another nice stop with a view of Goat rock. R. was having problems with a sore leg and we had to take a break to rest her up about 5 minutes from camp. She was very glad to see camp. Her sore leg was annoying but it didn’t dampen her spirits. She loved everything about the trip except her sore leg. We hiked into our campsite at Maggie’s Half Acre around 5 p.m. in time to set up camp and hike up to the top of Rose Peak to catch the sunset. My sore tendon kicked in on the hike to Rose Peak, but the sunset was great. We hiked back to camp and had dinner as the light faded and the stars started to come out. The stars were beautiful. I collapsed in my tent by 8:30 p.m. and was asleep by 9 p.m. I slept fairly well.
We were all up by 6:30 a.m. We had a nice quiet peaceful breakfast and got packed up and were on our way by 7:30 a.m. We hiked down to a valley first thing and then had to hike clear back up to another ridge top. At the top was a marvelous log to sit on for a rest break. D. gave out chocolate at that stop! Day two was fun if a bit painful for three of us. I was working hard to keep from stressing my left Achilles tendon as much as I could. R. was busy trying to not stress her leg. D. had chronic knee tendonitis to deal with on the down hills. J. was the only fully healthy one among us and he was the oldest! It was sort of nice to have others to share your complaints with though. We hiked along the ridge top for a bit and soon reached Murietta Falls at 10 a.m. We had a nice two hour break at the falls. We admired the view from the bottom for about 40 minutes and then moved up to the top and had a nice early lunch sitting next to the creek near the top of the falls. I soaked my left tendon in the nice cold creek water. We had some naps in the warm sun after lunch and around noon continued our trek to Del Valle. We had steep hill to trudge up after lunch, then a long descent to a creek, followed by another trudge up to another ridge top. Then we had the long long descent down to Del Valle. It’s a killer down hill hike of about 2000 feet over 3 miles. We were all glad to reach the bottom of that hill and shed our packs into the cars and drive back to Sunol to get the other cars we left there. It was a wonderful trip despite the aches and pains!
Pictures: http://community.webshots.com/user/cdrdash, Ohlone Wilderness album.