Tue, Oct 29, 2019
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After four days running around the North Coast by myself, I was due to meet my pal Marty in Ft. Bragg. He had recently retired and moved to this sleepy coastal town, far from the hustle and bustle of life in Silcon Valley. I had slept somewhere south of Eureka, still 2hrs of driving to Ft. Bragg, and was up early while it was still dark to begin the drive. With a bit of extra time, I found this minor coastal peak not far from Hwy 1. My GPSr map showed a road going to the summit - a potential drive-up? Not quite, at least not by me. There is a road going to the top but it's gated and locked at the highway. Unsigned for No Trespassing, I parked off off the road and hiked up road which apparently serves several properties. The road fork leading to the summit had a second gate, this one signed for No Trespasssing and also locked. I could see several structures through the trees. I was going to turn back thinking someone lived up there, but then it occurred to me that it would be unusual for someone to live behind two padlocked gates. I continued up the road, approaching cautiously, looking for vehicles that would be a strong sign that someone was up there. None were spotted. I found several old buildings, a smaller shed under construction and what looked like a trailhead plaque of some kind, quite new. This was telling. It describes a 2.7mi hike that could be done through the extensive property that extends down to the coast and includes Cape Vizcaino. The property is owned by the Save the Redwoods League, one of the oldest environmental groups in existence, even predating the Sierra Club, I believe. This must be some piece of property they use for retreats or some such thing, not open to the general public. At the small rounded summit rises a new-ish 25-foot observation tower. It's not tall enough to see over the many trees that occupy the property, but one can get a few glimpses of the coast to the south. Mostly it's meant for observing the redwood forest canopy. I left the property after descending the tower, leaving things pretty much as I found them. Time to drive to Ft. Bragg and help a pal pull up old carpeting and move a bunch of furniture...
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