Strawberry Peak

I needed one more peak to climb to complete the 2021 Six Pack of Peaks SoCal Challenge. While I am planning to climb Mt. Baldy as part of the Climb For Heroes, that hike has already been postponed once due to the forest closure orders. With that hike now slated for Veterans Day Weekend, there is a chance of weather impacting it. Heck, the first time I did CFH, it was delayed due to snow! Although we might be near the end of the fire season, there is always a chance for a repeat. Therefore, I chose Strawberry Peak to ensure my challenge would be completed.

I got to the trailhead around 7:30 am. The sun had risen above the marine layer that covered the LA basin. Unlike the last time I had come to this peak, there was certainly a lot more traffic on the road and cars parked at various spots. Once David Lipsitz (one of my fellow San Diego Hiking Society admins) arrived we grabbed our gear and carefully crossed the road to the trail. 

Some Forest Service workers passed us on their bikes, hauling their gear up the trail to do some maintenance. We continued working our way to the summit. The din of motorcycles and performance cars racing around the road below us took away from some of the enjoyment. Soon, Strawberry Peak came into view. 

From the junction, the trail would begin its steep climb to the summit. I took the lead as we made our way over some minor false summits. Once at the summit, we took a nice break and soaked in the views. It was nice to have completed another challenge. Now, I can focus solely on the Sierra Club 100!

We retraced our route without incident, passing several more hikers making their way to the summit. Unfortunately, my tracker went wonky, but using the time stamps on the photos, we did the hike in 4:13. Given we stopped to chat with some folks a few times along the way, this was not too bad. 

I am an avid peak bagger, sometimes backpacker, and former sea kayaker living in San Diego. In 2019, I became the third person to complete the San Diego 100 Peak Challenge. Not stopping with that accomplishment, I set my sights on the harder San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list, which I completed in 2021. In addition, I have conquered several Six-Pack of Peaks challenges (SoCal, San Diego, Central Coast, and Arizona-Winter). Beyond attempting the San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list a second time, I am looking forward to exploring new summits and new adventures across the southwest. 

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