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Backpacker Magazine – April 2008

Trip Finder: Stay-Dry Spring Hikes

Stay dry on spring treks in Minnesota, New Mexico, and more.

by: Tim Shisler

Canyonlands National Park, David H. Collier
Canyonlands National Park, David H. Collier
Porcupine Mountains Wilderness, Forrest Netzel
Porcupine Mountains Wilderness, Forrest Netzel

California | Southwest | East

San Gabriel Mountains - 2 Days
Ignore the name: Spring conditions in the Devils Punchbowl couldn't be more inviting. This easy 6-mile overnighter in Los Angeles County brings you through funky sandstone formations on the northern foot of the San Gabriels to a series of dry-as-dust canyons. Grab one of 21 tent sites (first come, first served) at the South Fork Campground, then hike 3.1 miles up the steep Burkhart Trail to Devils Chair, a rock ridge overlooking the punchbowl. (661) 296-9710

Ohlone Wilderness - 3 Days
Swap car horns for coyote yips on this 19.4-mile traverse through the heart of the Ohlone Wilderness, 28 miles northeast of San Jose. Its grassy, rolling hills get less than an inch of spring rain, on average. Drop a shuttle car at Del Valley Regional Park, then set off from Sunol Visitors Center. Camp at Sunol Backpack Area and tree-lined Stewart's Camp. Follow the trail markers with a white oak leaf in a brown circle.

Big Sur - 4 Days
Ventana Double Cone hovers 4,853 feet above the jagged Pacific coastline and commands wide-angle views of the Ventana Wilderness and Mt. Pico Blanco. The approach hike, a steep, lung-taxing 15 miles through sword ferns and redwoods, begins at Bottchers Gap Campground. Camp at Little Pines and Lone Pine camps on the way, summit on day three, and retrace your route 15 miles downhill on day four.

California | Southwest | East

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I Love this magazine, it's the best one i've ever read. It tops all the other outdoor magazines


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