Thursday, June 5, 2008

Chantry Flat

John and I both had the afternoon free yesterday, and since Boz had the day off too we decided to try a new trail. We drove through neighboring Sierra Madre and up to Chantry Flat in Big Santa Anita Canyon.

It was extra cool and cloudy, driving off casual hikers. Not much goes on there on a Wednesday anyway, which suits us. Instead of the popular Sturtevant Falls trail, we opted for the trail to Hermit Falls simply because it's not paved. It took us deep down into the shady canyon, where we came upon the small waterfall and three cabins, at least one of which was occupied and marked "private." The noisiest thing there was the water.

I think it's good for us humans to spend time surrounded by nature's disorderly shapes, to get away from computer screens, office cubicles, shiny kitchens and soft sofas, and to get out among rocks, trees and leaves for a while. It reorders our brains, sets us right again.

This is a post I wish you could smell. Damp, fresh sage, still rooted in the ground: there's no aroma like it.

27 comments:

Rose said...

Petrea
If I ever come to Pasadena can I hire you as a guide? Pretty pleeeease!!!
You know where all the lovely spots are!
This one is my favouritest!

Bibi said...

Bibi, le chien avec "une drole de gueule" (a funny face, literally) would love to hike on this trail. What a beautiful place you've captured.

Freefalling said...

You wanna come over and hike with me through our Grampian Mountains where I live?
You can if you like!
It's noice!

http://tinyurl.com/6ezh7z

USelaine said...

My mom's a hiker, and we went to Chantry Flat a few times when I was 3 or 4 years old. I remember seeing my first King snake there. I also remember the Live oaks, mostly for their curled up, sharp pointed leaves on the ground that hurt so much to walk on or touch. (Why was I barefoot?) For years after that, I thought I didn't like oak trees.

babooshka said...

I do count my blessing that I am surrounded by this kind of image daily.It's what I moved away from the
UK for. It looks like you have a beautiful part of the world there too. A lovely moist image.

Petrea said...

What lovely comments!

Rose, if you came to Pasadena I'd insist on being your guide. You'd never get rid of me.

Thanks, Bibi. All leashed pooches are welcome (bring poo bags).

Freefalling, you don't know how much I want to hoike the Grampians!

USElaine: I wore shoes, but I'm not a kid and times are different. Maybe the trail was softer then. The oaks are a protected species around here. Even if you have one in your yard, you're not allowed to mess with it.

Babooshka, one thing I like about Pasadena is being on the cusp of city and wildlife. We have easy access to Los Angeles and to mountain trails as well (trails are closer). I work in the city but crave the country, so it works. Lucky me!

Christie said...

I can see woods and quiet out my back door. It is lovely. I'm glad you had a good hike!

USelaine said...

8^) I think the shoes were off only near the parking area, and after that early tactile experience, the shoes stayed on! I was very little, and easily pooped out, so spent half the time high up, astride big shoulders.

Katie said...

Wow I so wish I could have been on this lovely hike with you today, smelling that sage and seeing these amazing vistas. I wonder who lives in the occupied little cabin marked "private"? It's such a bummer to work in a cubicle in a windowless office all day; I should have been a forest ranger. I'll definitely go hiking in the hills this weekend; you've inspired me to get out into the wild!

Petrea said...

Poor little Lainie toes! Glad to be hoisted up.

Katie, you get out there. I hope I inspired myself. I never get enough, and it's nobody's fault but mine.

Petrea said...

Seriously, it's like four in the morning there, isn't it? I hope he's having fun and nothing but.

It's a change to use a Mac. Just using a different keyboard is a problem, but that's true when you use any laptop. I traded for this Mac, and will have to go to the Genius bar to get the insidious aol stuff removed (no offense to any aol users).

Petrea said...

It's an older mac, TG. Maybe I don;'t have that? I have my dock but I don't see a dashboard thing as you describe. Oooh, my typing';s horrible.

Katie said...

Oh Petrea, what a bad computer day for you!! I went to PDP and saw your comments about accidently posting those comments here, so had to come see. Just so you know, I work on a PC all day at work, but I bought a iBook a few years ago, and after a bit, it's no big deal to switch from PC to Mac. There's still a lot i need to learn, but there's always a Mac user around who is happy to help!!

Lily Hydrangea said...

I love hiking around long island even though it's small by comparison. I know what you mean about the wonderful scents of nature though-there isn't anything indoors that remotely compares. Thanks for the beautiful view.

Tall Gary said...

If you have OSX (and you do if you have a dock) it should be there. But it's used. All bets are off.

Now that I'm here I think I'll stroll around your Pasadena for a while.

Bernie K. said...

Great photo! The fingers of that tree draggle into immemorial mists … think of the millennia of storms and sun that valley's borne, before a human foot ever trod—& brought all the troubles of History in.

I'm an inveterate Mac-brain, as you know, & will explain all, Dockish and Dashboardy, away from your blog.

USelaine said...

I'm trying not to take what Bernie said personally.

Tall Gary said...

Foolish, blind me. If you scroll down a ways at PDP there is a Paris Time device identical to Pasadena Time (except for the displayed time).

A general rule of thumb is nine hours forward.

Tash said...

I did a hike from Chantry Flats to Mt. Wilson many, many years ago with a college PE class. I still have the photos of the waterfalls. Thanks for a lovely reminder.

Louis la Vache said...

Even though you didn't participate in the Sky Watch meme, this shot (in "Louis's" opinion) would be a fine Sky Watch entry - and, thanks to your description, "Louis" smells the sage!

Petrea said...

Thought I was on Paris Daily Photo. Wrong PDP!

Katie, you're right, I already have Mac helpers right here.

I tried planting wild sage in my yard, Lily, but it wouldn't grow. Guess that's why it's wild.

Let me know what you think, Tall Gary. Aren't you local?

Thanks, Bernie.

Me too, Elaine.

Oh right, Tall Gary! The PDP clock! Duh.

Tash. Glad you like it, and thanks so much for saying so.

Petrea said...

Thank you, Louis. I'm a terrible joiner. It's enough for me to be part of CDPBloggers, and to do the monthly theme days, I think. If I over-commit it stops being fun (for me). Not that I don't enjoy watching the skies, and seeing everyone's Wednesday alphabet posts (or Post Alphabet soups).

Bernie K. said...

Boy, that's the last time I use the word "immemorial." That's just the stupidest thing ever. It's what I get for reading "Ulalume."

Lydia said...

I LOVE this photo and your description of the smell of sage.

Jilly said...

What a gorgeous photograph - and commentary. I so agree.

Petrea said...

Bernie, you're allowed to use any words you want. Except maybe "Ulalume."

Thanks very much, Lydia and Jilly.

Lindsey M said...

This seems kind of... how should I put this... well, for lack of a better word, spooky. Others I know would probably refer to it as 'emo.'