Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Iron Mountain Hike

Looking east towards Cuyamaca Peak
The previously hiked Mt. Woodson (2894 ft.) is a sister hike to San Diego County's Iron Mountain (2696 ft.), known for its "rough terrain, spring wildflower shows, diverse plant communities, rattlesnakes, hot summer days, and large boulders." (Poway Trails Guide.) But in November there are no spring wildflowers, hot days (warm, but not hot), nor rattlesnakes. Iron Mountain is an easier hike, being both shorter (6 miles instead of 8) and less of an elevation gain. Its views, especially looking east towards Cuyamaca Peak (6512 ft.) are spectacular. The following photo shows our destination: Iron Mountain taken from about half-way up the trail.Iron Mountain
This next shot shows our starting point: Highway 67 and Poway Road.Looking back at the starting point
Vegetation along the hike is fairly uniform. It is still in recovery from the devastating 2003 Cedar Fire so new growth is all about the same age and size. Here is a prickly pear cactus with fruit.Prickly Pear Cactus
Finally, we reach the summit, where a picnic bench affords a luxurious lunch spot.
Scott and Paul at the summit
Next Entry: Moonset at Moonlight Beach

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