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Nisene Marks Forest Hike

Trail: (West Ridge – Fire Trail loop)
No. of days: 1 day
Date: 02 February 2013

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It’s my first hike after completion of the Masters degree and a first one in California after a long time. I was excited to go on this hike. Thanks to Keerthi for informing me about the hiker group and also for the ride to the hike start point and back.

A group of 11 people, we departed Tasman at Cisco Way at 8:15am and reached a Safeway in Aptos at 9:00am. After a brief halt, we headed to the “West Ridge Trail” head in the Nisene Marks State Forest. We reached the forest check post at 9:35am and started the hike at 9:45am. The West Ridge trail to the west ridge camp is about 6.5 miles. On the way though, we missed the trail and got lost.

We did a double back after almost a mile and got back to the point where we had diverted off the trail. There was a lot of map reading, gps location tracking and the navigation by the olden means (by intuition) to find out the right direction to hike to.

At around 12:45pm we reached the West Ridge Camp site. Took a 30 min break to rest, freshen up and fill our tummies with very delicious fruits. The Almonds and Pistachio was a blessing. It tasted out of the world.
 

We decided to head back to trail head for the potluck that was planned. We took the Fire Trail and reached the base at 3:40pm. The potluck that followed the hike was indeed very tasty and fun. I reached home by 5:30pm. A wonderful time with nature and a long 15.7mile hike concluded the day.
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