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Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

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Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby boyblue » Sun Jul 07, 2013 8:32 pm

I've really enjoyed the photos being posted in the other thread with the similar name (http://www.summitpost.org/phpBB3/beautiful-sierra-summer-conditions-t65429.html). I envy those of you who have found or made the time to do some Sierra Trips this summer... and I'm downright jealous of those of you who live and work on the East Side.:x :wink: This season we seemed to have acquired our own 'mountain range' of family and 'other' obligations that have been keeping us from the mountains... so far.

Yesterday I did somehow manage to sneak out and do a short hike in our local Diablo Range- specifically in Sunol Regional Wilderness. Luckily the week long heat wave that we suffered through had ended only a couple days before. Temps were very mild and a surprisingly cool breeze was very welcome indeed.

From park headquarters, my hike started with a quick warm up to the top of Flag Hill:
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A nice view point near the summit:
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Even though most plants had been baked dry, it was still possible to find some color here and there:
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My main goal of the day was to tag Peak 1423 which is shown below:
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I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Peak 1423 has the second most amount of prominence within the boundaries of Sunol Park at 343 feet. (Maguire Peaks has the most.) Here's the summit block with Maguire Peaks in the background:
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boyblue on the summit:
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By the time I'd returned to Flag Hill Road, it was still barely midday, so I decided to check out another trail that I'd never visited before: Vista Grande Road. The map showed a couple of other peaks that looked easily accessible from right off the trail.

Someone should tell this tree that it's still early July- not October!
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View westward from the summit of Peak 1545. The arrow points to a barely visible plume of smoke from the airliner that crashed at SFO about 30 minutes earlier. Just to the left in nearly the center of the picture is Peak 1423 where I was earlier that morning.
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The bench was a welcome sight at the top of my final 'summit' of the day- actually this should be referred to as Point 1600+. Mission Peak is visible in the distance.
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Soon it was time to head back to the trailhead. This photo looks down from my highpoint (about 1680 feet) toward the park headquarters on the floor of the valley. Flag Hill is on the upper right and Calaveras Reservoir is on the upper left.
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Sorry, no glaciers, alpine lakes, talus, etc. We're hoping to get up to the 'real' mountains later this summer where I'd like to take my 12yo up his first alpine peak (Hoffman or Dana?). Meanwhile, I suppose it could be worse; at least we don't live in ('gulp') Kansas. :D
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Re: Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby Tom Kenney » Mon Jul 08, 2013 5:31 am

Nice shots!

Some of the walnuts and black oaks are turning down here, too (SoCal, Oat Mountain area). I think it's drought. The live oaks and pines are losing about 5% foliage, where clusters of leaves/needles will go brown, but the rest of the tree still looks healthy. The good news is that the dry conditions seem to be killing the invasive mustard and thistle before they can seed.
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Re: Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby butitsadryheat » Mon Jul 08, 2013 6:51 am

Nice! I used to hike around that same area when I lived up in walnut creek. I saw an early fall up there too, but not that bad. Must be really dry.
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Re: Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby mrchad9 » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:01 am

Nice report. Glad it wasn't too hot out there. It was baking in Kings Canyon!

Hoffman AND Dana!
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Re: Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby boyblue » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:07 am

Tom Kenney wrote:Nice shots!

Some of the walnuts and black oaks are turning down here, too (SoCal, Oat Mountain area). I think it's drought. The live oaks and pines are losing about 5% foliage, where clusters of leaves/needles will go brown, but the rest of the tree still looks healthy. The good news is that the dry conditions seem to be killing the invasive mustard and thistle before they can seed.


That particular tree in the photo was very striking and unexpected. A real eye catcher. At one point in the road, one can look down the steep slope below it (sheltered and north facing) and see several more trees with similar colors. Hopefully this wasn't caused by a disease or something. I don't recall seeing any other trees like that during my hike.

butitsadryheat wrote:Nice! I used to hike around that same area when I lived up in walnut creek. I saw an early fall up there too, but not that bad. Must be really dry.


Indeed, very dry. Disturbingly, I picked up 3 fresh looking cigarette butts near a bench at Vista Grande which is surrounded by tinder dry grass. :roll:
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Re: Beautiful DIABLO RANGE Summer Conditions

Postby boyblue » Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:11 am

mrchad9 wrote:Hoffman AND Dana!


I like the way you think, Chad! :D
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