I'm busy working on illustrations for a magazine assignment right now, so I don't have any art to post this week, but as usual, we did go hiking this week and I have a few pictures. We tried to go to Solstice Canyon in Malibu. I figured a park along the coast would be cooler than inland and a canyon would be shady, so we could avoid the heat that we've been experiencing here in the valley. When we got there, the parking was completely full so we left, unsure of what to do. We remembered that the trail head for Castro Crest was at the end of the road we were currently driving. So after a long, winding, and slightly harrowing drive high up into the mountains, we ended up at Castro Crest.
So much for avoiding the heat. Just a little ways inland from the coast and it's significantly hotter. We arrived around 2 pm, so the sun was pretty brutal for a good part of the hike. I think the trail we hiked was a segment of the Backbone Trail which runs through Ventura County and Los Angeles - really long! The first portion of the trail which is a slow decent to a canyon appeared to have burned within the last year or two. The undergrowth was growing back, but the trees were blackened. From certain angles, you could see the bark peeling off the trees and the white wood underneath looked almost like silver in the sunlight.
The trail crossed a dry meandering creek-bed several times. We noticed a lack of wildlife. We didn't see as many lizards as usual at this park. We did see three small rabbits on our way out, though. Perhaps they become more active late in the day when the sun is going down.
If the sign-posts were accurate, I think we did about six miles all in all. Exhausting! We went and got some Jamba Juice and kicked back at home for the rest of the evening.