Despite waking up with a hangover from having consumed too much of Karl Strauss’ Chocolate Peanut Butter porter the night before, I managed to get out of bed early to meet my Sierra Club friends for a hike in Anza Borrego State Park. I tagged along to help scout a potential outing for the 2013 WBC car camp weekend. Our destination was Coyote Mountain. Temps forecasted for the desert were to be in the mid-70’s, which is fine with me, but my friends weren’t looking forward to that. I packed plenty of water and electrolytes and as I put my daypack on at the trailhead, I thought, “Gosh, this is so much lighter than my backpack during the Grand Canyon trip!” We began our ascent around 9 a.m. at Peg Leg Monument with me trudging along in the back as I was not feeling my A-game.
But after an hour or so of climbing and sweating, I started to feel so much better. Thus, the cure for a hangover, go take a hike! The trail is well-marked in the beginning, but the last few miles up to the summit are not so well-marked so we did a lot of off-trail scrambling. There are a few false summits before one reaches the summit marker.
We reached the top around 12:30 p.m., signed the register and then had lunch. The views of the surrounding desert peaks, Villager and Rabbit peaks, were amazing. I could even see sailboats on the Salton Sea. It was so peaceful at the top that we really didn’t want to go back. Since we did a lot of steep elevation gain, the return trip was rather scary, but thankfully I had my trekking poles. I think we all ran out of energy the last few miles back to the trailhead since we joked about just spending the night on the trail.
We reached the parking lot around 4:00 p.m. and noticed several RVers playing a game of bocce ball and yelled at us, “Welcome back!” After having covered 11 miles with about 3,100 ft. gain, it was a relief to get out of our hiking boots. We hopped into the car and drove back to San Diego under a glowing pink sky. Overall, it was a nice exploratory hike.