Palomar Mountain High Point Baby Rattlesnake

Peak Summited2020 High Point
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadPalomar Mountain Fire Station
EncounteredFall foliage
Road ConditionsRoad impassable/closed
Bug StatusBugs were an annoyance
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsMinor obstacles posing few problems

I started my hike at 7:20 am which was only about two hours later than I should have. It hit the high 90's on my way down. I brought a 2 liter Camelbak with two extra 16 oz bottles of water. I also froze two 16 oz water bottles and left them at one hour marks on the way up, I'm soooo happy I did because I drank every last drop of water on this hike. The start of the hike was the only confusing part, the fire station spreads out over a couple acres. The parking is pretty self explanatory but finding the trail head from there can be tricky. When facing Palomar Mountain you must go to the right about 100 yards. The first marker gets you going but if you miss the wooden sign with no words and a trash can you will waste some minutes. I ended up going up a little incline to a brown water tower, wrong way! The wooden sign and trash can are at the bottom of that little incline, it's a narrow single person path. The first two miles of the hike are rocky and bushy. You leave the Oak trail and come out on a truck trail for the rest of the hike. There were a couple confusing turn-offs on the truck trail, keep going up! There is also a split at near the top which ends up connecting back anyways. All Trails was used at least twice LOL! The hike was surprisingly shady for a good portion. If it wasnt the hottest day of the month it would have been even nicer. I saw a baby rattlesnake on my way up, rabbits, squirrels, and plenty of birds. There was a guard at the top of the tower when I got there, I remember thinking about how cool of a job that must be. I did the whole hike in 6 hours with a little lunch break at the top. It's a great hike and I recommend it!

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