Sunday, April 13, 2014

Hiking Pinnacles National Park

Yesterday we marked something else off of my California bucket list – hiking at Pinnacles National Park.

Pinnacles National Park

Pinnacles is an ancient volcanic field about an hour drive from Monterey.  A trip there takes a little planning ahead of time because there are two entrances to the park –an east entrance and a west entrance.  And there is no road connecting the two inside the park.  I did my research Friday night, and Saturday morning, we were headed toward the east entrance to hike to the bear gulch caves.

Our hike didn’t get off to a great start.  While we sat at the visitors center waiting for the shuttle to come take us to the trailhead, I fed Evelyn and Jarrod got the sunscreen out for the kids.  The sprayer was broke making it useless.  Thankfully I had packed our adult sunscreen too.  Jarrod put some on the big kids, I put some on Evelyn’s bald head and white arms, and we hopped on the shuttle.

We got of the shuttle at the trailhead, I strapped Evelyn in the front pack and went to grab my camera out of the backpack.  And then I realized that I forgot my SD card in the computer at home.  So iPhone photos it was.  And since we weren’t near the car, that also meant that Jarrod had to lug around the dead weight of a useless camera in the backpack.

Jarrod went to find the restroom while I kept track of all the kids.  I saw Trenton rubbing his eye, and he immediately started crying.  And that’s why adult sunscreen isn’t for kids.  We flushed Trenton’s eye out with water three different times, but the crying and whining went on for close to thirty minutes.

So this is what that part of the hike looked like.

Pinnacles National Park

Thankfully we didn’t turn around and leave and Trenton’s eye started feeling better.

Because the hike was awesome and the views were gorgeous!

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(Trenton wanted to be the photographer rather than being photographed.)

Evelyn did great on the hike.  She refuses to sit facing me in the carrier, and wants to be facing out.  But she is still too small to put her legs through the sides, even with the bottom of the carrier cinched up all the way.  So she sits frog legged which seems pretty uncomfortable.  But then again, she was born frank breech with her feet in her face, so she must not be worried much about comfort.

Our hike took us to the bear gulch caves.  Trenton and Charlotte were so excited!

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The kids were rock stars in the cave!  Even Evelyn liked it!  There were some tight spots that I had to squat down and waddle through, but it wasn’t too hard.

Once we got out of the caves and on the back side of the trail, we stopped to sit down for a snack and take in the views.

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Trenton loved stopping and talking to hikers on our way back out of the trail.  He told them about the caves and where to look out for puddles.  After a rough start to the hike, it was good to see our kids having a good time and talking about how much fun they had.

And you know another sign of a successful hike?  Three sleeping kids on the way home!  We’re so glad that we got to knock Pinnacles National Park off of our list before leaving Monterey (only two months left here!)


Jen said...

Wow this place looks amazing!

Traci@TheHallway said...

Looks like it ended up being a great little trip!

Mrs.B said...

What a fun trip, it looks so pretty!

Jamie said...

What a fun day!

Sarah @ The Not Quite Military Wife said...

Wow, it looks beautiful out there!!

Jenn said...

Awesome hike! And I am excited for y'all's next adventure. :)