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Mission Peak (sub for Mt St Helena)

Peak Summited2020 Mission Peak
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadOhlone College
EncounteredFall foliage
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusNo bugs
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

I was planning a day hike to Mt St Helena when I learned we were allowed to substitute Mission Peak. With no carpooling due to Covid, and the nearby camping closed, Mt St Helena would have made for a long day for me since it's a 116 mile drive. So Mission Peak it was. I've hiked it many times, mostly with a full backpack with the Girl Scout backpacking group that I help lead. Typically we day-hike from Ohlone College, with our packs, when we are training for an extended summer trip. When we camp at Eagle Springs we hike in from Sunol because the trail is much quieter. Either way, yesterday the trail felt quite steep enough without carrying an overnight pack.

As I arrived I learned that on-street parking on Mission Boulevard is no longer allowed. Parking signs directed me to an upper lot in the college parking where I paid $4 for an all-day permit. The trail was fairly quiet, the day was clear and the temperature comfortable. I headed out up the Peak Trail, then  took a detour out to the hangliding windsock to seek out a nearby geocache. My husband used to fly hang-gliders here many years ago. From there I headed up the front to the peak, looped around the back past the backpacking camp, and finished up on the Panorama and Spring trails.

This completes the series for me. Who knows I may hike Mt St Helena one day, but preferably when things are back to normal and I can carpool with my Six Pack friends!

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