This weekend Krissy and I had the chance to get out and away. We were only gone for 30 hours or so, but it was an amazing time. We drove about 32 miles from our little apartment into the Angeles National Forest early on Saturday morning to hike into Devil’s Canyon. 3.5 miles and 3 hours later we made it to the trail camp – a beautiful area right next to a small creek. We set up our tent on the far side of the camp – away from the group of boy scouts who were packing up – and then backtracked a bit to a small area on the creek.
This particular spot had an amazing rock – literally fashioned into a loveseat sized chair right over the creek. We sat on the rock for a few hours and ate lunch, talked, listened to the birds, and watched in amazement as 7 or 8 snakes slithered down the rocks into the water and proceeded to swim gracefully up and down the creek (while amazing, I also thought it was a little freaky). We hiked a bit more towards a waterfall, but turned around before we got there due to the waning daylight and headed back to camp.
We made some dinner (an amazing cous cous curry dish with garbonzo beans and apples), and by 8:30 were curled up in our sleeping bags trying to keep warm as the sun descended and it got chilly FAST. we played a few rounds of cards with the light of our headlamps, I burned myself on this stupid metal candle holder, and then we fell asleep, probably by 9 PM. It felt incredible to be so exhausted by 9 from a long day of strenous hiking.
We woke up early this morning to a frosty ground, ate some breakfast, packed up our tent, filtered some water for the hike out and started the trek. The hike down was mostly downhill, so were expecting a long and grueling hike up the canyon back to our car. It actually wasn’t so bad – it was pretty much uphill for the bulk of the trip, but we were literally just so excited and happy to be out in the wilderness that the three hour hike went by really quickly. By 10:15 AM we were back to the car, and by 11 we had unloaded our gear onto the front lawn to be washed and cleaned.
Even though it was a short trip, it was a much needed and much enjoyed break from our everyday life, which is simple yet still full of stressors and deadlines. Getting away into the wilderness is something that we both love to do, and this weekend made us both realize how much we need it – for ourselves, our marriage, and our relationships with others. For us, it is just one of those grounding experiences that allow us to get a focus on our lives and continue moving towards the future with energy. So, hopefully we will the chance to explore the San Gabriels (and other areas in SoCal) more often – there is a lot more ground to cover before we’ve seen it all!