nelson's bighorn sheep cucamonga peak


By Heather

We were driving home from a concert in San Diego last night. It was nearly midnight, and cars were still clogging the road.

We reminisced about places we used to live. Places where, at midnight, you and your car were the only things for miles. Places where, at 2 a.m., you really, truly did not have to worry about hitting traffic. Here, you always do.

“…with traffic” is the refrain. Traffic is the side dish to everything here.

Earlier yesterday morning, I hit the road at 5 a.m. for a hike to Los Liones and there were people all over. On a Saturday, before the sun was even up.

I thought of my Mrs. Fields bakery job in high school – I loved, loved, loved the early morning shift, even though I was a hardcore night owl back then (I’ve since become a hybrid of the two – I love to get up early and hit the day running, but don’t try to converse with me before noon).

I’d set up the shop while it was still dark out, then unlock the doors and stand behind the register and watch the street slowly fill with sunlight, then people.

In those moments between unlocking the doors and watching the world wake up, there seemed to be a gap, a place where you could find perfect quiet and stillness. If you were sleeping in, you were missing it.

As much as I love my life out here and can’t believe I get to live it in and near so much beauty, escaping people in Los Angeles can be so hard. That gap of quiet and solitude isn’t so easily come by. I go hiking to find it.