Mission Peak CC
Mt. Allison P1K CC
Monument Peak CC

Thu, Oct 17, 2013

With: Laura Molnar

Etymology
Mission Peak
Story Photos / Slideshow Map Profile
Mission Peak previously climbed Sun, Jan 7, 2007
Mt. Allison previously climbed Sun, Jan 7, 2007
Monument Peak later climbed Thu, Mar 5, 2015

Laura was in the Bay Area to attend her brother's wedding, so we took the opportunity to spend the day hiking in my neck of the woods. We went to Fremont to do the classic Mission Peak hike from the end of Stanford Rd. We tacked on Allison (the highest of the three) and Monument Peak to make it a longer outing. As usual, the parking lot there was full and the trail to Mission Peak busy with locals getting in their workout. The weather was a bit warm for this time of year, but the air quality and visibility were decent. One could make out San Francisco and Mt. Tamalpais from the summit of Mission Peak. As usual, we found almost no one between Mission Peak and the other two summits. Crowned by a collection of communication towers, they see far fewer visitors. To the west of the summits is the San Francisco Bay ringed by the communities that surround it. To the east are the higher hills of the Diablo Range from Mt. Rose to Mt. Hamilton. Laura commented that the encroaching urban/suburban development doesn't give her the feeling of being "out there" that she gets in the Sierra. True that, but this is about as out there as one can get in the Bay Area. In all we spent about 5 hours on the hike to cover about ten miles.

The highlight of the day, however, was not the hike but dinner at Google headquarters. Matthew invited us to join him and Nga for dinner there. This is not the usual fare that I was served by corporations back in the day when I had a real job. It was gourmet fare in a Disney-esque setting, complete with colorful lighting, intriguing architecture a boatload of google bicycles everywhere, and a ton of people, some wearing Google propeller hats (not kidding, either). It was one of the most bizzare settings I've ever encountered in high tech culture. We walked past luxury busses that pick up employees to take them to their various communities around the Bay Area. Beer bottles were strewn about the place following TGIF with the company founders (nevermind that it's Thursday, it was done deliberately to allow Google employees on the other side of the International Date Line to participate in TGIF via satellite linkup). There are no trash cans anywhere. Everything from the cafeteria is either recycled or composted. Even the plastic containers for the irish cream parfait were compostable. It seemed amazing that there was actual work taking place somewhere around the many immaculately manicured buildings, but I can't vouch for this since I saw none of it. I couldn't help but think it will only take Google's first quarterly loss to make all of this disappear, but in the meantime they seem to be raking in billions each month and for now the party rolls on...


Moosie comments on 10/24/13:
Oh, I dunno, Bob-a-loo: I think running errands, washing my truck, and having a honey-lavender ice cream cone trumped the hike. ;-) Thanks for a wonderful day out, my friend.
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This page last updated: Thu Oct 24 20:38:43 2013
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