Red Rock Mountain


By: Gabriele Rau

Mark and I tried again, this time we drove to Cienaga Campground. We started hiking at 9:00 AM along Fish Creek. There are 4 crossings and recrossings, no problem, the water was low. We came to the magnificent oak and the mine (right side). There is a piece of rusty equipment left. We climbed down the bank to the creek, crossed the creek a last time and found the trail across real easily. To our surprise it had been clipped in the beginning, about mile!! We had loppers along, but it was not necessary for us to clip. The trail is easy to follow, there are also ducks in some cases of doubt. We got to the saddle. This day was nice and cool, not hot as the previous time. Now we started up the steep ridge. It is really steep, lots of use or game trails and run-off gaps. This is a 900 climb in about mile, it is steep and difficult, but open, with cacti and low brush. We stayed to the right of the first outcrop, then switched over to the left side of the second one. The outcrops seem to run into each other at this point. Mark built a duck at the cross-over. Now it is just up to the peak, the USGS Marker and the can are at the second rock, where there is also a stake. The views are superb. Except the installations on Burnt Peak there is absolutely no sign of any human development. We were up at 12:00, left at 12:30. The way down was not any easier. I fell once, Mark 3 times. From the saddle Mark went ahead, I did some light clipping on the way down. We were down at the car at 4:00 PM.

Then Mark wanted to drive out the other way. There was little water in Fish creek and to our surprise the gate, that was locked the previous time, was open. We drove on. Then Mark did take a Forest Road to the left, he wanted to know where it went. It did go to Lake Castaic. He wanted to cross over there, but this is a Government Hydroelectric Facility, everything is fenced in and there is no way to cross. He asked some bikers, they said, there is no exit, except an ORV road. Mark drove on and on, we did not get anywhere, but got different views of Lake Castaic. Then we returned. The gate to the road was still locked, but on the right side some cars had broken through and it was easy to get to the main road. We drove to the freeway. Now it was 5:15, we went and ate a Tasty Burger at Lake Hughes Road, then Mark drove home. We were home at 7:30 PM, we had started 6:15 AM. The weather was great, it had rained the week before, still cool temperatures.

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