That’s no short cut!

Peak Summited2020 Mount Sizer
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadEast Dunn Rd
EncounteredWildflowers blooming
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusBugs were not too bad
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

The road in was closed, so had to park on a turnout and hike into the park. Took me a while to find my way to the trails described in most hiking sites since there were no maps and everything is closed up, but I managed to find the trail. When they tell you this is an extremely difficult hike, they are not exaggerating!  Everyone describes how extremely steep and difficult “the short cut” is, but until you do it, you really have no idea.  What nobody seems to mention is that the return trip is almost just as extreme!  Keep in mind, you’re hiking down and up a ravine, both ways!  To give an idea of how steep and difficult that “short cut” is, it took me about 2 hours to get to Coyote Creek, right at the base of the climb, and by that point I had hiked about 6 miles.  The 1.3 miles up took me about an hour. This was a brutal climb!

After that, you still go up a ways more, but not to bad. There really isn’t anything that marks Mount Sizer, but when you get there you realize you’re at the highest point.  Now the long trip back.  I tried Jackass Trail cause it was shorter, but I don’t recommend doing it in shorts.  Lots of grass, bushes and poison oak, at times you don’t really have a trail you can see.  Luckily the vegetation was pretty short and it was cool, but when it heats up, there could be more of a snake risk, so definitely watch your step!  Beautiful views and scenery, so it’s hard to keep an eye on where your feet are going.

After crossing the creek back along Poverty Flat Rd you start the long, slow and very steep climb back.  You’re going to have to climb another thousand feet or so, but at least this time you have much more shade than when you climbed “the short cut”.  Eventually you get back to the top, out to the HQ and out to wherever you left your car.

This is a very difficult hike and should not be done on a hot day or when it’s recently rained as the creek crossing could be tricky.  I carried 100oz of water with me and wish I had more!  There was a lot of wildlife everywhere. I might try this hike again and split it into a two day backpacking trip.  If you do this during the shelter in place order, prepare to spend a lot of time alone.  I was out there for just over 7 hours.  I saw a family fishing at Frog lake 45 minutes into my hike and did not see another person the entire time I was there until I got back to my car.  Can’t get much more socially distant than that!

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