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Date Sent:      August 08, 2008
Subject:           Castle Rock hike tomorrow
From:               John Bondon
For those that know me, besides enjoying hiking, you know that my other passion is tennis. Normally this time of year begins the Adult Mixed Doubles leagues, so my weekends are tied up with that. But this year, for whatever reason, the league has been changed and doesn't start until January. So I have some free time on my hands to get back into hiking! Though I won't be available every weekend, since I am this weekend, I thought "let's do a hike!". so for me that means tomorrow as my Sunday is spoken for. Who's with me? Short hike in and out at Castle Rock in Walnut Creek. Plan for about 2 hours round trip. Please be on time as we will plan to depart on time. We may make a pit stop at the bathrooms on the way in for any one who needs time to catch up. :) Directions to the trailhead are posted on the website.

Now some news from our past hikes. Andrew reports that he overslept for last Saturday's hike and was only able to catch up with 4 hikers. "There were two groups. Us 4 and the rest of the group. Special thanks to Steve for leading the "leaderless band of hikers". He has helped me before and I really appreciate what he did.I am so ashamed, I have never done this before. We had about 15 hikers on what turned into a hot day. Kim was so cool to make brownies for us. I had several. Please come to more hikes Kim."

We are human; it happens. Thanks for taking the lead, Steve! And thanks to Mars as well who also helped out that day and filed this report: "Andrew didn't show for a 9 AM start and by 920 AM were leaderless and the group asked me to lead so I did even tho part of the trail I had not been on. We had 9 hikers in the starting group and caught up with 4 hikers that left the staging area early, we had 13 in the group then. A couple turned back early as they thought we didn't know where we were going. The rest of us enjoyed lunch in the shade of large Pine trees near the San Pablo reservoir. It was a warm clear day. We thought we had seen ANDREW earlier in the turn around location. Andrew was at the over look staging area upon our return. Andrew told us he had over slept......" You can view a few of the pictures Mars took from the August 2nd hike available online: http://hiking.bondon.com/pictures/BrionesOverlook2SanPabloDam/

Andrew also filed this report regarding the Moraga to Las Trampas hike this past Sunday: "Today was totally different. It was freezing. We had 23 hikers. It was very difficult. My EBMUD map does not have topo lines. We split into 3 groups. Diane and Will lead the fast group, Howard led the middle group, and I was the leader of the sweeper group. Even though we were a mile apart, we talked to each other [with walkie talkies] the whole way. I love it. We actually helped Howard's group on their return trip. I could see where they were, and told them which way to go. Tech is wonderful!"

Unfortunately Andrew has some personal matters to attend to so he won't be able to lead hikes for us for awhile, though you will see him out there from time to time. We thank him for his tireless leadership and willingness to do so so consistently. Many weekends would not have had any hiking opportunities over this past year had it not been for his willingness to lead and post hikes, so we greatly appreciate that. For anyone else interested in leading some hikes, please don't be shy. Use the "Lead A Hike" link on the website to post your own hike, or contact me directly if you have questions about how to get started.


A Preview of our next hike:

John says of the upcoming Castle Rock hike on Saturday at 10:15 AM: "This will be an in and back type hike, approximately 2 hours round trip. Please plan to arrive early as we will depart on time.".

You'll find more details about this upcoming hike posted on the East Bay Casual Hiking website.

Happy Trails! :)

Happy Trails,

John




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