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#182172 - 01/21/14 03:45 PM Sespe Creek overnight with my son
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
I took my 5 y.o. son, Alex, on his first backpacking trip over Christmas break. We hiked up Sespe Creek in the Los Padres National Forest (Thanks for the suggestion Rockchucker!). I chose the hike because I knew there would be plenty of spots to stop wherever Alex got tired of hiking. He made it about a mile and half and besides a few hiccups had a great time. I was hoping to go farther but having a good time was my primary concern.

Here we are at the trailhead:


Shortly out of the parking lot the trail cuts across the mighty Sespe:

The first "water crossing".... hmmm the ranger said the Sespe always has water in it. Got a little concerned at this point, but was hoping one of the tributaries would have water.

Hiking down the trail:



About 3/4 of mile down the trail a tributary came in:


We set up camp on a sand bar near an existing firepit and collected firewood. Around 3 or 4 PM Alex tells me he is ready for dinner. I know he won't be happy if he is hungry so we start up the fire and roast hot dogs.



Went to check out the river. We found pretty good chunks of ice in the river. Hmmmm..... I had been following the weather at a weather station a few miles away on top of the ridge for over a month. Temperatures never dropped below 40° at night. Prediction for the night was a low of 48°F.



Got a visit from the ubiquitous scrub jay found at every campsite in California:



After roasting some marshmallows and drinking hot chocolate the temps started to drop. We snuggled into our sleeping bags and read books. After reading the 3 or 4 books I brought about a half dozen times we fell asleep.


In the night the temperature dropped like a rock. My sleeping bag and mat were inadequate and I did not sleep much. Luckily I had a warmer bag for Alex and he seemed to be warm and sleeping soundly. It could not have been any warmer than the low 20's. I guess the bottom of the canyon does not get much sun and stays quite a bit colder than up on the ridge. We woke up the next morning and a small pond nearby had completely iced over.

The next morning I was exhausted but Alex woke up happy. After we got up he told me his feet were "freezey". I tried getting him moving to warm up but the sun was nowhere near popping over the ridge and his disposition was degrading quickly. I built a small fire to warm up with but he was already pretty inconsolable and didn't want to stand near the fire. I finally threw him back in the tent with both of our sleeping bags and put a warm bottle at his feet. He perked up after that and when the sun finally cleared the ridge he came out and explored the area while I packed up camp.



Here we are back at the trailhead:


Alex said he had a good time and that is good enough for me.


Edited by BZH (01/22/14 11:44 AM)

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#182174 - 01/21/14 03:55 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
hmmm.... why do my images never show up when I imbed them? I am pretty sure I am following the directions correctly frown

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#182181 - 01/21/14 11:22 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6401
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I've never been able to post photos on this site, either, if that's any comfort….
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#182183 - 01/22/14 12:32 AM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
What a cool first trip. Sespe was a good choice.

All I can tell you is keep bringing him out there. When my kids were that age they'd complain pretty loud when I said we were going but they always had fun once we were there. And they complained just as loud when I said it was time to go home. That was my motivation to make them go again, but they never knew it.

Now they only remember having fun. wink




_________________________
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"You want to go where?"



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#182185 - 01/22/14 08:54 AM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
ETSU Pride Offline
member

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 931
Loc: Knoxville, TN
Originally Posted By BZH
hmmm.... why do my images never show up when I imbed them? I am pretty sure I am following the directions correctly frown


Using the wrong code. You had the correct img bracket, but you linked a hyerlink code. Try uploading to Photobucket.com then use the generated img code and copy/paste onto here. That what I do.

Glad you guys had a lot of fun!
_________________________
It is one of the blessings of wilderness life that it shows us how few things we need in order to be perfectly happy.-- Horace Kephart

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#182186 - 01/22/14 09:03 AM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: ETSU Pride]
rockchucker22 Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/12
Posts: 749
Loc: Eastern Sierras
Same here, it's very easy with photobucket.

I would love to have been there. Hopefully you get the pictures to upload!
_________________________
The wind wont howl if the wind don't break.

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#182187 - 01/22/14 11:49 AM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: ETSU Pride]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By ETSU Pride
Originally Posted By BZH
hmmm.... why do my images never show up when I imbed them? I am pretty sure I am following the directions correctly frown


Using the wrong code. You had the correct img bracket, but you linked a hyerlink code. Try uploading to Photobucket.com then use the generated img code and copy/paste onto here. That what I do.

Glad you guys had a lot of fun!


That worked. Thanks! I guess when they say upload the image to a site like photobucket... they mean upload the image to photobucket.

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#182189 - 01/22/14 01:46 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
I looked at your links. I didn't see a way for you to reference just the image. There may be one but I didn't find it. This is really a Google issue. They could provide an easy way to allow this but they seem to have decided not to.
_________________________
--

"You want to go where?"



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#182194 - 01/22/14 08:01 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
rockchucker22 Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/12
Posts: 749
Loc: Eastern Sierras
The pictures make this tread soooo much better! What a happy looking boy, it so nice getting the next generation into backpacking.

So was the Sespe dry at Lions Camp? I've never seen it dry there.
_________________________
The wind wont howl if the wind don't break.

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#182196 - 01/22/14 09:22 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Awww, great job, guys!

Cheers,
_________________________
--Rick

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#182197 - 01/22/14 09:39 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: rockchucker22]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By rockchucker22
The pictures make this tread soooo much better! What a happy looking boy, it so nice getting the next generation into backpacking.

So was the Sespe dry at Lions Camp? I've never seen it dry there.


The entire river was dry the last time i was there. There were awful mucky little holes with a bit of stale water in them. We drank water from the faucet at Willets - which was from a cold spring with less minerals than in the hot spring, but still a bit flavorful.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#182198 - 01/22/14 09:41 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Nice trip, Dad! We always saw leopard lizards, horned toads, bear tracks, lion tracks and snake trails in the trail - hope the kiddo got to see some critters and tracks too.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

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#182199 - 01/22/14 10:16 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: lori]
rockchucker22 Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/12
Posts: 749
Loc: Eastern Sierras
Originally Posted By lori
Originally Posted By rockchucker22
The pictures make this tread soooo much better! What a happy looking boy, it so nice getting the next generation into backpacking.

So was the Sespe dry at Lions Camp? I've never seen it dry there.


The entire river was dry the last time i was there. There were awful mucky little holes with a bit of stale water in them. We drank water from the faucet at Willets - which was from a cold spring with less minerals than in the hot spring, but still a bit flavorful.
really? That sucks, I really love the Sespe when it's full, a real beautiful place with lots of hidden gems.

Originally Posted By lori
Nice trip, Dad! We always saw leopard lizards, horned toads, bear tracks, lion tracks and snake trails in the trail - hope the kiddo got to see some critters and tracks too.
I've seen almost as many bears in the Sespe as in Monachi. Once we went through the devils gate via the river and all we could do is follow the bear tracks. The water was deep, cold, and full of fish.
_________________________
The wind wont howl if the wind don't break.

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#182207 - 01/23/14 11:46 AM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: rockchucker22]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By rockchucker22
...
So was the Sespe dry at Lions Camp? I've never seen it dry there.


yup bone dry. That pic is what the entire Sespe looked like until that tributary came in about 3/4 of mile down the trail.

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#182209 - 01/23/14 12:19 PM Re: Sespe Creek overnight with my son [Re: BZH]
rockchucker22 Offline
member

Registered: 09/24/12
Posts: 749
Loc: Eastern Sierras
Wow! We use to jump off the rock into the Sespe right there in Lions Camp, until the rock fell over. It was a good 40' up and deep enough that you didn't touch the bottom.
_________________________
The wind wont howl if the wind don't break.

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