Catalina Island

A long day and a long steep hike with jaw dropping views an other unique features.  I started at Blackjack Junction, hiked down to Little Harbor and then over to Two Harbors, somewhere around 15 miles.

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My friend and I departed on the boat out of Long Beach at around 6:15 am.  We passed the Queen Mary.

2     3     4   From Long Beach Harbor it takes about an hour to get to Avalon.  Above and to the right of the casino shown in photo 2 is the steep tree-lined single lane road that zigzags up into the hills.  We took a cab from the harbor, the ride lasting about 30 minutes.  The cab rides on this trip were nerve-wracking and expensive.  Photo 3 shows the hazy view from Blackjack Junction to Avalon.

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Photo 1 – Black Jack Mountain, the second highest peak on Catalina.  Photo 2 – Mount Orizaba, the highest peak on the island.

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Looking out toward the Pacific side and down to Little Harbor.

8     9   At this higher elevation the hills were covered with short oak trees and a lot of cactus.

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This was a real treat – we walk up on one of the island’s resident bison.  Big and powerful.

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As we lost elevation on the first leg of the hike we began to see taller trees like pines and sycamores.

18   The Old Laughing Hag

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We approach Shark and Little Harbors.  They share a cove but are separated by the peninsula in the middle.

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Shark Harbor, looking left to right

22     23   We rested at Little Harbor campground for awhile.  This palm tree provided some much welcome shade.

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Looking back at Little Harbor as we pressed onward.

26     27     28   Honestly, I was not prepared for the steepness of some of these hills.  I struggled my way to the top.

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The trail snakes along the cliffs and ridgeline.  Thankfully we found a little relief from the Sun and heat.

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Straight up the ridge, this was a brutal climb.

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On This Day, Above The Clouds

41   This radio antenna marked the location where the trail finally began to descend again.

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We approach Two Harbors.  On the Pacific side there is Catalina Harbor.  The afternoon wind made the water in the harbor sparkle in the Sun.

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The second harbor that makes up Two Harbors is Isthmus Cove.  In photo 2 see the two small islands in Isthmus Cove – Bird Rock, the larger one, and Ship Rock.

46   Almost there now.  We would spend a couple hours in town waiting for our cab ride back.

47   We departed on the last boat out.

 

 

 

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