Mount Islip Do-Over

I celebrated my four year hiking anniversary by heading back to the San Gabriel Mountains and Mount Islip.  It was over a year ago when I first tried to summit Islap and it was the one time I truly chickened out on a trail, quitting just before reaching the peak because I couldn’t handle the steep drop-offs.  I psyched myself up this time around by studying fear management techniques.  I was going to conquer Islip, stand triumphant at the top and finally redeem myself.  But a funny thing happened, I didn’t find the trail nearly as scary this time around.  I almost felt cheated.  I’ve tackled scarier trails than this since my first go round, such as the recently hiked Strawberry Peak and Chapman Trail, so that helped.  I thought to myself several times, “This is it? This is what I was so scared of?”  I still had a great day and getting to the explore the top of Mount Islap was a treat.  Here’s to four fantastic years of hiking!

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Icehouse Canyon Trail – Chapman Trail Loop

I was looking to beat the heat which has been bad on the coast.  I had heard that Icehouse Canyon, right near Mount Baldy, was cool even on hot days.  I wound up getting caught in a freak storm with no rain gear which made for a very memorable day.  If you hike here remember that you need both a Wilderness Adventure Pass for your car and a permit to enter the Cucamonga Wilderness area.  The latter may be obtained for free at the Mount Baldy Visitor Center, which you will pass on the drive to the trailhead.

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